Nineteen-year-old Yale University Undergraduate Rakel Tanibajeva has taken the fashion world by storm with her launch of LOB fashion. The boundary-breaking company is women-owned and dedicated to protecting, preserving, and advocating for the environment. This certainly comes as a ray of light in an industry that often exploits not only people but resources as well.
Tanibajeva’s timing is certainly admirable — while multitudes of businesses are scaling back or shutting down, she is launching a brave initiative to create high fashion clothing entirely from upcycled materials. LOB Fashion’s first collection consists of dresses and gender non-conforming clothing, which fits right in with their core values of inclusivity and diversity. In addition, the company has made the noble pledge to donate the entirety of their first collection to organizations that aid young people in need.
We were lucky enough to get a hold of Tanibajeva’s Management Team and schedule an interview with the young entrepreneur.
Tell us a little about yourself.
My name is Rakel Tanibajeva. I’m nineteen years old, and was born and raised in NYC. I‘m an entrepreneur and undergraduate at Yale University, majoring in environmental studies. I have been an environmental activist for as long as I can remember, and I love traveling the world and learning about how various cultures engage in sustainability, and how to implement traditional methods into a modern world. I believe that a successful career is based on one’s energy, passion(s), and perseverance, so with that logic, I’ve been pursuing mine since childhood.
What inspired you to co-found Lots of Berries?
I was always passionate about environmentalism. I wanted to continue to spread the knowledge I gathered over the years. For instance, I had the honor of studying sustainable living in Japan for a few months. 2020 has been quite a cautionary tale regarding the consequences of issues allowed to fester, and demonstrated environmental imperative as well as environmental resilience if given the chance. This year of hardship and tragedy encouraged us to find a way to contribute positively and beneficially.
What’s your mission statement?
We see a world in which people can live sophisticatedly, distinctively, and sustainably. Therefore we provide the tools necessary to make high-quality, sustainable living a reality, from clothing, to decor, housing, and food.
What are your plans for the future?
Due to limitations posed by the pandemic, we are currently focusing on “LOB Fashion.” Every individual has the power to collectively enact change in their everyday actions and way of living. We want to do whatever possible to reach people and make a positive impact despite the challenges. Thus, we are in the process of establishing our media platforms, like YouTube and TikTok, so people can learn more about us and possibly adapt sustainability for free and from the comfort of their homes. As this global situation hopefully subsides in the near future, we are excited to expand our endeavors and implement more material plans, like building a workshop on our beautiful land in the Catskill Mountains, NY, leading classes, and manufacturing eco-friendly products.