Anthony Manfredonia, Luxury Fashion Designer and Sharon Herrick, Jewelry Designer
When two people have a vision that aligns them, it seems inevitable they will find one another. So it was when this luxury fashion designer from New York and social worker turned jewelry designer from Maine happened to meet at a leather showroom in the garment district. Their shared mission: to blend the world of fashion design with fine artists and craftspeople from around the globe. The pieces in their collection represent the unity that exists between cultures, genders, and socioeconomics. Together, they are committed to establishing a different way of doing business by strengthening the ties that connect us rather than the lines that divide us.
Kim Ortengren, Principal, Designer
Illuminated Me's studio is fortunate to be housed at Wallace James. Sharon and Kim's combined interest in design and best business practices makes every day a collaborative experience.
Wallace James Clothing Company provides the ability to design, develop, and produce garments, all under one roof. By offering domestic small run capability, designers are able to free their creative, exploratory process without the looming risks inherent in mass production factories. Markets can be tested and garments can be developed to perfection, without the worry of high minimums or low demand. Our philosophy and scalability allows designers to grow at their pace — from concept to stitch. Inherent in WJ’s culture is a commitment to fostering opportunity for Maine’s underserved immigrant and refugee populations. In an industry that transcends language barriers, WJ have made it easy for immigrant and refugee women – who have the skills and motivation – to secure good paying, rewarding work within our company. Currently, 50% of our employees represent the immigrant and refugee communities and we aim to grow that number to 70%. Together, these two woman-run companies look forward to collaborating in the growing domestic apparel industry, as well as in the shared goal of fostering opportunities for the growing population of “New Mainers.”