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Rising Stars: Meet Alexis Giger

Today we’d like to introduce you to Alexis Giger.

Hi Alexis, please kick things off for us with an introduction to yourself and your story.
I’m a North Carolina native who moved to St. Louis to pursue a fashion design degree at Washington University in St. Louis. Post-grad, I worked for several local fashion brands and organizations until March 2020, when I was laid off. I immediately started sewing masks at home from donated materials, and reconnected with my love of sewing and creative reuse. When my apartment studio became too cluttered, I serendipitously found a small studio in Tower Grove East, where I have been since November 2021. Little Cliff has become a space for me to explore mending, sewing, vintage repair, and experimenting with fabrics and dyes, while providing services to help others preserve their favorite clothes and textiles. I have also started teaching mending classes, I love to share all that I have learned through this project.

Alright, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
Some of both! Certain aspects of Little Cliff have come together naturally, like finding the perfect studio near my home, or being able to turn to my wealth of connections here in St. Louis for business advice along the way. Others have not been easy. I am entrepreneurial, but not wired to run a business. Hiring advisors and an accountant have been crucial for staying afloat! My biggest obstacle will always be myself though – believing in my work, getting past perfectionism, and remembering those crazy, inspirational early days of the pandemic that gave Little Cliff its start.

Can you tell our readers more about what you do and what you think sets you apart from others?
I love the challenge of mending a variety of garments, but my favorite pieces to work on are vintage denim and workwear. Ironically, I hated wearing a uniform throughout grade school, but find myself drawn to iconic American uniforms now, and how the best pieces get better over time. Having worked for several years in the fashion industry, I’m turned off by fast fashion and rarely buy anything new. Instead, I love putting my resources and skills back into the clothes I love most. I actually get excited now when I rip my own clothes, because it means I’ve earned the wear, and have an opportunity to add to the garment’s personality with mends. I’m also experimenting with dye as a way to revive stained or tired clothing.

Can you share something surprising about yourself?
I work a full-time job in addition to running Little Cliff! I don’t mention this to promote hustle culture, but to share some of the reality of running a small creative business. Thankfully, I have a day job that is flexible and supportive, so that I am able to run Little Cliff as a creative outlet and not as my sole livelihood. I may transition to Little Cliff full time someday, but for now, this balance works for me!

Contact Info:

Image Credits

Michael Worful

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