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Speaker Highlight: Meet Consuelo Melo, Founder of Muss Muss

Updated: Apr 1, 2021

Each month, we choose one of our past speakers and take a look into their journey and the small steps they took in their life which led to their big goals.

Consuelo tells us about how fashion and sustainability can create an extraordinary team; a perfect example is her brand Muss Muss which creates a clothing line that makes trends in society and is conscious with the environment. 

1. Could you tell us how Muss Muss was born and why did you decide to be a sustainable brand and dedicate to the fashion industry? 

Muss Muss was born from my personal exploration of my “woman identity”. I've always been drawn to the duality between genres. In this way, tailoring represents very well how garments of masculine "naturalness" can be useful to create a new femininity. A femininity free of stereotypes and social expectations. Muss Muss is a safe space for clients to feel confident with practical, functional and timeless garments. Really utilitarian pieces that will be in your closet for a long time. Sustainability goes hand in hand with our concept of creating high quality garments. We use some organic textiles; we produce everything in Costa Rica by the hand of specialized tailors. We are committed to keeping tailoring and artisan development alive.

2. What is the main objective/purpose of Muss Muss? 

Offer our clients quality, practical, functional garments that last over time and manufactured by experienced tailors. Garments that are responsible with the environment and with the people who consume and manufacture our products.

3. What were the main challenges you had in the process of creating Muss Muss? 

The truth is, the biggest challenge I have ever had has been to overcome myself, to lose fear of showing my art, to be vulnerable, to build a business and to dedicate myself to my great passion. Then I have run into difficulties typical of the union, especially in a country like Costa Rica where independent fashion is something relatively new.

4. How could the fashion industry be combined with a sustainable industry? 

For me they have always been two things that coexist and one cannot be without the other. I have always been committed to the quality of my products and I know that quality must go hand in hand with sustainability. The high-quality materials we use (English and Italian wool for our suits) and now a line of white organic cotton shirts have been the most important points that we have developed in recent years. Small-scale production and our products are all made to order. We do not want to contribute to create more waste or have more stock. It has been hard work of growth and great commitment. But I think our business will be greener day by day.

5. What were the main advantages and disadvantages of your sustainable industry?

First, get material in our country that was really of quality, sustainable and organic. We do not have these products in the country; therefore, everything must be imported. Advantage has been the great qualified workforce available in the country, tailors with many years of experience and a great sense of commitment. Human courage is unmatched.

6. Could you please tell us more about your career, experience and trajectory? 

I'm a fashion designer and publicist. I have worked for more than 10 years in advertising and I am a partner of a boutique digital marketing agency. I have worked in styling for magazines and costumes in advertising, film and television. I studied fashion in Costa Rica and for a year in Europe fashion business. I have been a fashion design professor at Universidad Creativa in Costa Rica for more than 4 years. In 2015 Muss Muss won the award for best collection at the Mercedes-Benz fashion week San José. And we have presented 3 more collections on that platform. I am co-founder and designer of a menswear brand called Laskar and creative director of Muss Muss.

7. Which is your specialization in fashion and sustainable industry? 

My specialization is in fashion business. Everything related to sustainability I have learned on the go.

8. What recommendations do you give to people who are starting in this industry (fashion and sustainability)? 

Innovation and technology. Two great opportunities to develop a brand worldwide and that allows us to improve products, customer experiences and the relationship with our consumers. Digitization and sustainability are the keys to the future of fashion.

9. What are your best experiences and learnings in your entire career? 

The most important of my life has been to win the award for best collection, since it validated my idea and positioned Muss Muss in the local market. My most valuable learnings have been perseverance, fighting and believing in yourself. Don't let go the dream.

10. What are the next steps for you and your brand? 

Muss Muss was born as a brand of custom-made garments. At the end of the year we will have a virtual store available to sell our products in size around the world. We have evolved the brand a bit for a slightly younger consumer and garments for more daily use.

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