180 is a house: the 180 DEGREES workshop
Located at C olima Street , number 180 in the Roma Nte neighborhood , Mexico City, the house houses the store , offices and workshop where all 180 GRADOS creations are made. A very well-kept secret, the third floor is home to a small hotel, where guests become witnesses and participants in the entire operation.
Today, with textile giants outsourcing labor, it can be a bit complex - or almost impossible - to track the different phases of production : conception, pattern making, cutting, sewing, finishing and, finally, sale. .
At 180 GRADOS , being a small team, we can monitor the entire manufacturing process, from its conception to its commercialization .
At the head of the 180 GRADOS workshop , I meet Edmy , about forty years old , with a serene and concentrated look . Passionate about her work, the manufacturing of garments has no secrets for her.
He met Bernardo, creator of 180° SHOP, in 2008. At this time, he was working for an Inditex project, and Edmy accompanied him in the development of production, to be able to manufacture Inditex garments in Mexico. He was making the designs, patterns, samples and production during this period.Little by little the 180degree theme flourishes, mainly to offer an alternative to the massification of fashion based on the principle according to which everyone does not have to wear the same thing. From there, they created a larger team and the workshop was established.
Edmy works in the workshop with Julia and Alfredo. A very bright workshop with squares, papers, threads, sewing machines, fabrics and music.
This is how , daily they work with a sound environment , giving preference to Mexican groups from the sixties/eighties . It is Mrs. Julia who always chooses the songs and has her own , ad hoc organization . Choose the station according to the day's work: a rhythm to concentrate, another to relax or keep your energy high.
Mrs. Julia is also a pattern maker. Alfredo arrived as sewing support two years ago.
The workshop is always in communication with the saleswomen (one floor below) and the commercial director, Marie, to know what is selling well and produce accordingly. In general, they make between thirty and forty pieces of the 180º Outwear models, the most casual brand, and never more than ten if they are models from the more exclusive ONE HUNDRED EIGHTY GRADOS line .
For Edmy, the only difficulty in his work is when he cannot find the fabrics he wants for certain models or when a supplier is late in delivering . So, it has to be organized in a way that does not affect them too much, marking their times well.
At the time of speaking to us, the new 2017 winter collection for 180º SHOP was leaving Edmy's workshop. W ith a variety of cotton fabric and knit fabric, there is a great mix of seasonal colors : ecru, mustard, navy, tan, gray , black and a blue and white print.
Today Edmy has a lot to do , «I am going to finish these molds so that we can make the gradations of all the models ( between two and four sizes depending on the model ) and I will cut samples . »
COTTON: Vegetable fiber obtained from the lint that covers the seeds of the cotton tree. This fiber has great absorbent power, is heat resistant, washable, does not become moth-eaten or matted and does not accumulate static electricity.
FABRIC: Fabric made up of many interwoven threads that form a type of sheet or sheet. Membrane, lamellar fabric of soft consistency.
KNIT: This is the name given to a type of fabric made of cotton, wool, silk or synthetic fibers, made by hand with needles or crochet or manufactured by machine that is characterized by its flexibility, elasticity and ease of adaptation to the body. It is a primary characteristic of the 20th century, beginning its ascending career with the creation of a new type of women's and men's underwear and also with the generalization of sports practices. In the first two decades of the century, the progressive use of jersey also introduced artisanal production techniques that later became machine-woven.
SAMPLE: In commerce, a small amount of a product that is shown or given away to make it known or promote it.
PATRONIST is the professional who is dedicated to pattern making. In the fashion industry, the original garment made by the fashion designer is also called a pattern, from which the rest is copied (changing sizes, materials or details).
photos ©Santiago Arenas (Active School of Photography)