August 16, 2019

It all began with an idea, Mr. Stewart wanted to start his own label, and so he did during undergrad at Cornell College. Previously, participating in an entrepreneurship program while in high school, Stew developed a mindset of self-discipline to bring his ideas to life. Continuing this path, Stewart took a costume construction course under Prof. Jenny Kelchen. Using the skills he learned in class, Stewart got in contact with the Co-Founder of the Saint Louis Fashion Fund (Susan Sherman) for an internship at the Fashion Fund. Being in the garment district of St. Louis, the Fashion Fund is revitalizing what St. Louis used to be when it came to fashion. Part of their mission included the internship Stewart was involved in. He became the teaching assistant of Jo Flannery, who was tasked with teaching high school students how to create mood-boards, conceptualize, cut, sew, and, present their work within a week. By educating the youth, this influences a new generation of designers and businesses to develop here in St. Louis which further aligns with the Fashion Fund's vision.

As the teaching assistant, Stewart went through the motions of the program as well while teaching a few students how to distress denim which was his primary fabric to recycle at the time. Stewart took this opportunity to show his talents using garments under his label’s name. Using a denim-on-denim outfit to display his work alongside the students, Stewart went to pitch what would become the main concept in his work; recycle garments to save the environment. After all of the students presented their work to an audience filled with parents, friends, and board members of the Fashion Fund, the General Manager of Neiman Marcus - Frontenac Plaza (Cheryl Dimauro) was impressed enough to where she decided to display all of the garments presented on the sales floor of Neiman Marcus and this included SSTEW3.

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