Life & Style
Made In LA
By Alice Perez
Jul 5, 2013 - 7:52:11 AM

Made in LA
LOS ANGELES—The increasing popularity of the DIY craft, Made in America, and eco-friendly movement has gained momentum throughout the last decade sweeping across urban epicenters of creative-entrepreneurship throughout American cities and abroad. One of these creative hubs is none other than The City of Angels, where many DIY spirited folks like Monique Cruz, founder and curator of her vintage boutique on-wheels, Selvedge Dry Goods. Step aside food trucks, now it’s time for boutique trucks hitting the road and coming to your neighborhood, “We are a part to the American Mobile Retail Association which has 54 active trucks in the United States, 13 of those trucks are from Southern California,” explained Cruz to Canyon News.

 

One of the handmade nation movements gained a major supporter in its alliance with the digital media, where people have the accessibility to join into a broader crafting community, sharing ideas and learning various forms of craftwork through videos, images, websites, blogs, and social networks. Cruz is especially popular when it comes to social media and people are following as she is always posting, sharing, tweeting, pinning, and instagramming. “Yes! Social media is a big part of being a small business. My followers love seeing updates to the truck and new products,” said Cruz.


Across the US a renaissance of American DIY craft culture was weaved within the mid-90s and the Dot.com era. Along the journey picked up some faithful followers within the knitting revolution and cities started becoming hubs for the artsy and creative folk. Stamped at the front of her turquoise colored truck are the words “Eco-friendly, Reconstructed, and Vintage.” “I love that I can close the boutique doors at the end of the day and feel good about what I'm doing. I’m redefining fashion in an eco-friendly way,” said Cruz.

 

Before opening the doors to Selvedge Dry Goods and spreading her love of fashion and eco-friendliness, “I worked as a fashion designer for many years and encountered many ethical issues which I didn't feel comfortable supporting anymore. So my idea of creating a "sustainable boutique" was born. At the end of the day I just want to feel good about the work I was putting out to the world,” explained Cruz.


A true Cinderella story and it was love at second sight when she looked far and wide for the truck that would suit her to live happily ever after. “I found my truck on Craigslist after two months of searching. We went to visit the truck twice. The first time it wasn't love at first sight since it was the very first truck I had seen. A month went by and after looking at several other trucks, it became LOVE at second sight,” explained Cruz. The name Selvedge Dry Goods has a once upon a time story, “The definition of Selvedge is the self-finished edges of fabric, which keeps the fabric from unraveling or fraying. I like to think of my company as the selvedge for sustainable fashion. Since every product we carry must have an element of sustainability whether its fair trade, handmade, re-claimed or re-constructed. Dry Goods are textile products like ready to wear clothing or sundries.  "’Dry Goods’ as a term for textiles has been dated back to 1742 in England. Most importantly, I loved the way it sounds together Selvedge Dry Goods,” explained Cruz.

 

Fans and first time visitors of her boutique on wheels fall madly in love with her little shop with every nook and cranny jam-packed with vintage clothing, jewelry, purses and cutesy knick knacks. “I hear these questions daily "Can I live in your truck? I wanted to make it look like you walked in to a women's powder room, but with a crafty feel,” said Cruz.

 

Keep an eye out this summer and autumn for Cruz and her vintage boutique truck. “During the Summer, we're regulars at the Play House District Block Party in Pasadena, food truck night at Figueroa and York in Highland Park, Silverlake Craft & Vintage Fair, Pasadena Rosebowl, Downtown Anaheim Farmers Market, Grand Park Concerts & Events in DTLA and the LA County Fair. In the fall, I'm at the following campuses: University of Southern California, Cal Poly Pomona and Cal State University Long Beach,” said Cruz.

 

Cruz wants to spread the word of staying crafty and supporting small business Made in LA. “Keep creating sustainable products and reaching out to different communities in Los Angeles. You can find us street side in your area soon,” she added.



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