Bunny Yan: Fashion Edutainer
Welcome podcast friends and fans friend is falling forward with my next exciting guest. This young woman takes old zippers that are made into clutches defective clothing that's made into bags and recycled aluminum windows that are made into jewelry I'm talking about bunny. She is a marketing adviser turned fashion edge you -tainer. She produces a fun. I. G TV series on the fascinating side of sustainable fashion. Hey Bunny how are you girl? What is happening friends have? Yes and www. INSTAGRAM DOT COM. So Bunny yes. With three does everybody does because you got what you long gate that's. Funny. When your next project coming up Oh, well, I pretty much do a video every week, and I also have a by weekly segment called E. CO as fuck sorry had to bleep that out where should use students from the world on their kick Ass Eko project myself all my topics are focusing on making sustainable fashion a bit more less guilt should and less doll more focusing on short by size into that you just accidentally learn something from and how did you started on this whole thing you're and environmental activists turned fashion designer Diogo around I would to fit. As a fashion designer might passion however, I like to see mink in everything I like to see why is a designer can make a stress with ten buttons deduction. Then come back with only seven because you can produce with a certain budget how come the merchandiser then changed the color into read because the previous sale suggests is better that they cannot take a chance on the color I. Love The reason why everything worked together not until when I started. Visiting factories in China and seeing how much waste that's actually getting thrown out just because the color is style little bit too dark. That's GONNA get shredded into garbage when I go. ooh, wow, that is actual problem. You hear numbers like million billions as much as huge. You just don't feel it. It's not like visual when you see mountain of closed getting shredded at that time I wasn't thinking about environmental activism I was more thinking about we you're going to. The Way and sunny for how much. More can save money as designer making stuff that the production 'cause allies and profitability margin can go. Of, all the transformation part in the creativity and from Dan, I start gathering upside code recycle designers are around me who use products that looks not diy but functional beautiful and fashioned four items and I open China's very first sustainable gift shop. To, the point that we were voted the best shop in China by time out magazine. Yeah it was really cool and then I envisioned a bigger project to link all the defective and all the overstocks, slow factories and bigger brands to other. To us and that startup was able to accept it into incubator, we were able to raise like half a million dollar fine and The, White. House. Oh. My God, you went to the Obama White House. Oh girl you gotTA. Tell me what was that like I wanna know all the details. was funny when I got that email coming through saying you bite the White House Oh. Yes. Sure. Scam. A Siberian prince over here that needs money. Like I didn't think how why house, exactly going to contact you. Stu. Letters occasion I don't know I. Think it. Would you through email not until the second one that's asking for a security check then I'm like. Where you don't want money from me. Oh. Okay. I was freaking awesome. Did you handle that situation? I honestly almost I will get security outskirts time. I was holding my pat. I didn't have my phone on me to take a picture. So now I'm in the audience looking Obama holding up this big device and thinking to myself, please don't think I'm trying to hold up any weapon. What an honor, how did you make the leap from seeing all of this fabric that was just being discarded into a vision and then into a profitable business plan? How did you break that down? How did you do that? Always been a very fearless person I. Am I just don't think that shouldn't go for it. Anytime I have an idea hard not hard possible not possible I always like to just least take that first step for me at the time it was just hey, all of these beautiful material getting wasted. Let me do something about it. They weren't this like a Ha moment when Com Soleil our planet is in trouble do something now I always like to find the voice, the profitability, the reason the more empathetic way can work together, not just saying, Oh, this can only be great because you not making money and because you're NGO ain't doing out of your heart, it can't be both it can definitely be something that you can live off of and be good for the planet. So like fast forward to now, I have worked with a lot of company how to help them conveyed their equal messages in. To something that's more resume that resonate with audience more and also I incorporate their marketing production waste into the marketing campaign. Can you share give us an example? How did you? How do you see something working for something and say, Hey, think about it this way because that's what artists do artists think outside the box and artists are also very much committed to making our world a better place to live, and this is what attracted me to you as a person is that you're not just making money you are paying it forward in so many ways that's what I just admire about what you're doing. Thank you. Thank you for me working with brands I always want to know their desired outcome example the Tom Shoes were they want to do is have a great opening for their China stores. So I work with local designers and grabbed their defective shoes and create one of a kind pieces for the openings. The idea was to auction off the shoes, but the outcome was so great and everybody social media posts, posting and cost. So many pictures they actually decided to tour the shoes of for all their open. Oh, my gosh. Yeah, that was really great and on the bigger bulk part when you have defective shoes when come to shoot brand, they're like marking on or there's a grubber group print saying that cannot be removed. A lot of time will you can do is just honestly I not saying that that's the only way. But when they come to big quantities, if you just donate to another facility in other countries, there's like a whole load process. So I do is I. Find a after school kids program and they take the They were able to paint on the scene no longer Kency the defect, and then they get the Philippines for the most needy apart for the brand that means they don't have to pay the money to burn the shoes or warehouses shoes. They get a marketing piece out of it to get their shoot fix for free and they get tax write off when become donation situation ran when land. On My. What I also noted about this whole process that you have created is there is an educational component, and as you may may not know I was an English and theater teacher highschool for thirty years and I was also an adjunct professor and educational theater at Nyu, and one of the things that I always look for is how can I take what I know and? Pay It forward and that's something that you do. Yes. It's really fun to work with all the brands and all, but there's also a lot of crecy for me. I see all the content out there when come to ability usually really long doll and full of guilt like not doing enough you need to be a better person when we are living in very stressful. Community and environment especially right now, there is a low grey stress already in your day to day life. The last thing you want to do is look up a giant piece of article with terms that you don't understand and trying to I'm air quoting educate yourself. So I, want to make the well content like how I want to consume it short funny and just enough. So I can see the hope and the possibility the call to actionable I can't do instead of just like you're back person but the secondary it's also A very selfish reason is i. need a creative l. let myself being in fashion in marketing focusing ability for twenty plus years I'm in lot of circuit on panels and speaking each man in keynotes. But me myself I am loud I'm very colorful. I'm Asian Look Y'all if I don't put out a certain persona or V I look I in turn others and nothing wrong being loud and flashy at peacock around it. Just you give yourself extra barrier where people to prejudge before they get to know you and maybe tiring and You have that feel and the look for other people out there who is feeling the same thing just like why does each industry has to have their distinctive look or type cash? You can do it whichever that fits your personality and not just trying to fit in with the mainstream is like that's another reason why inspired me to start that segment AF is all the gen Z. out there. That we constantly talking about it, they gonNA change the world. But if you go to the conferences, you don't really see getting invited bear speaking of the project and with my Segman Eko af I really want to give a platform for all the ECO innovators out there to talk about their coolest seasonable projects experiences combined where their innovation creativity and I just go what? I'M GONNA start that segment so far. That's only been like two months. I have interviewed students from central Martin in London who's tighening packagings into fashion. Kids in Turkey who's turning food waste into fabric dye into their collection on talking to bio-fibre cater. That's back. into new fiber and use a bio mimicry to make better material and bioplastic, and about to talk to somebody who's doing allergy yarn just like incredible projects in they're still all in. Just Amazing Bravo because as a high school teacher I, never underestimated what my students could do. There was never any thought of me thinking. Well you're only fifteen years old. You're only seventeen years old my feeling was hey. Fifteen year olds, sixteen year olds seventeen year old. You can do something you can make change I mean look at Greta Thornburgh, how amazing is that and I'm just so glad that there are people like you who see the promised in these young people and say step up to the plate. Here you go. Here's the bat, knock it out of the park. Good for you buddy. Yeah. I do think you when you were talking to me before about being raised in China. and seeing this work and changing this work is your family any part of this ability for you to create this kind of work? Did they play any role? No. Personality, and how I always embraced the individual. Yes. That's my mom raising. Always speak up to one I feel it's right. She kind of free range me raising. Great because China at that time, it's all about the rules cure teacher doesn't matter if you stink is right on the odds I have always been the type of kid questioning if you are asking me to do certain things if I don't see a reason, why am I doing it but because I was made in China and exports us when I was twelve I don't really have that base vocabulary on the technical term on Chinese language. So it's really hard for me to convey these things to my mom I just usually tell her every now. And then a couple of slip I did or random things without really bringing the giant picture sustainability because I also comes in turn with we not off from the same era. We've got the same thing, but that doesn't mean that you cannot be a good person that appreciate things that you have done. So I stopped being frustrated of Nye to explain to my mother and just appreciate her her I can relate because I was brought up in a large Italian family and a culture that you know girls got married had babies and I just. I just rebelled just wasn't part of my DNA and I basically defied my parents and said, this is what I WANNA do. I want to do something in the arts I wanNA do something on the stage and I I did it. I just did it and I have a number of students that I can. Look back on and be proud that I was part of that force that encouraged them to pursue their dreams. Do you have like a favorite student or project or an idea that you're really proud that you got to implement a things from the students or yes from the student of Yeah. I. Okay. Now them pick playing like the the parent and trying to know everybody special but everybody is special. They are doing very different things from different angles. Everybody's journey is super unique. One of the things I love doing before jumping on like you do too is just have a conversation before the call interest here, their journey, their story type of thing that you normally would nah. Here if you don't like the a France and I am just genuinely like. Any stories not only can you find reflection yourself in there you also get inspired of the things that everybody else overcome. It's never one to innovation creations that you usually see all the. Painful process all the things people need to overcome either on a cultural level on family level or on skill level. You only see the more beautiful successful picture and I love to hear these stories and Phil grounded also and just realized right now the time is not the same as before and there's a lot of pre judgment. I even have still even though in the circle a lot that I can go I guess that has changed and update my inner files to Orleans a great connor. So they are a wonderful rainbow of colors cannot be picked up with you bring your bringing up something else that I've been thinking about is we are in a very dire traumatic time. and. As someone from Chinese heritage. How has this whole racial divide awareness impacted you and your work this topic is quite grant I can go many different ways if I want to bring my heritage in days I, think over time over the journey of me going from fashion designer to fashion marketing adviser into Edgy -Tainer is a journey of appreciating myself an mixed heritage that have I remember beginning to trying to get rid of my accent's you trying to blend in in the way that's more fitted to a western culture. Like way by its while ago then little by little you start noticing now you trying to blend into your working firemen than you trying to blend maybe suge friends or people you hang out with until the day you go. Well s all of these. It's pretty tiring to be everybody's bunny that what they think bunny is and just kind of go back to your childhood when you do things that just makes you happy. But also incorporate will you have learned as adult it? How that? Affects on everybody else not the judgmental a side not what they think you are but more of effect you have if that is all positive than just be you that's what's so wonderful is that you can serve as a role model young Chinese Asian girls will see you and say if bunny. So, can I why not? and. You lift up these young people and validate their art, their vision through your work and I i. just applaud you. I'm just so old that you are doing this kind of work and making this kind of of difference, which is why I wanted to have you on my podcast and just talk about from the start of your project to where you are now, and where do you see going forward going forward now that I have my own it TV series on. Site of seasonable fashion I am actually working on a series where couple of media companies turn it into a series for streaming either a netflix level war by size content for platform. Costa to. And also looking at. Bordering international channels China us global talk about things that I really find fascinating up cycling sustainability and fashion. Do you have a favorite project? My, I have to tell you my favorite project is the one where you made these beautiful classy clutches from recycled wine corks I one. How do I get one? Oh. Yeah. When I have my soc- level gift shop details on all different. Brands and artisans I fell. Put. Their beautiful products into my shop? A really I think she's still making it. I can't connect you with her afterwards and the core clutches are from recycled Cork, from Portugal. They may be I know they have even color ones I really like what you see like little color facets in between all the brown beige interest gorgeous toss over. It's beautiful. I printed out a picture of it. It's absolutely gorgeous and I'm sure what I'll do is I'll add the links. So people who want to buy and purchase some of these products can look it and purchase it for themselves. Well it looks like this is a rap. And no pun intended bunny I am just so thrilled that you got to share all of your ideas with me and I can't wait to see what's coming next congratulations. Thank you so much. So prepare for my show coming up I would definitely you. Thank you for having me I. Find out more about what Fran is up to go to our website at first online with Fran Dot Com. This program was produced by March Hare Media and recorded at cheap studio productions. But? Move.