Entrepreneur Devon Bird has always had a definitive, mature style. That maturity – knowing who she is and living her truth – has been expressed in her distinct style choices through the years. Her dynamic, maximalist style stands out among a sea of minimalist millennials.
Devon has worked in the fashion industry for many years; she worked the overnight shift re-merchandising at Club Monaco where she loved having the first peek at all of the new product and laying it out perfectly before the customers were introduced to the collection.
This love of merchandising lead Devon into corporate retail where she ran the merchandising department for Saje Natural Wellness. After expanding that brand into the US market, she decided she missed the tactile retail bricks and mortar experience of a clothing boutique, so she created her own: Moden Boutique.
Now Devon is preparing to open another boutique right next door – Moden Essentials – in the early Spring. YAM had the chance to sit down with Devon and talk about her unique, maximalist style.
How would you describe what the term Moden means to you and your brand?
Moden means mature in Norwegian, and fashion in Danish and German. My grandmother was from Norway and I wanted to infuse her memory into the brand in some way. Mature fashion does not represent a type of conservatism. For me, it means using your clothing as a way of expressing yourself that puts your best self forward to society. In today’s environment streetstyle has become synonymous with sweatpants and sneakers, and I have simply never identified with the casualization of dressing. The Moden brand is all about elevated everyday basics that you don’t need to save for a special occasion, but that make you feel special nonetheless.
What are some of your favorite brands that you work with? Why?
It’s hard to pick a favourite as they all bring something unique to the table, but the brands I am most excited to receive for Spring are the Vancouver-made brand AYRTIGHT, with their functional fashion perspective that never shies away from pairing custom prints and unique shapes, and ELK Australia’s big bold designs and injection of colour that seemingly always run counter to what is offered in North America.
What trends are you seeing for 2021?
Colour! Each collection has really embraced bold pops of colour balanced with comfortable silhouettes that make it easy to embrace into wardrobes. Sure, black matches everything, but after 2020, I think we could all use the vibrance and joy of the full spectrum of the colour wheel!
What garments could you never live without? What are your staples?
I am very much my mother’s daughter, and we have never met a blue and white stripe dress shirt we didn’t love. I enjoy wearing big voluminous statement pieces but sometimes they can be a bit overwhelming on my narrow frame, so I like to balance them with structured pieces like cotton dress shirts and denim. I also love high-impact jewelry from statement necklaces, to big bold earrings. ELK has such a wonderful selection and I always add a couple of choice pieces from each collection they produce.
Who are your style icons?
Jenna Lyons, former creative director and president of J.Crew. Her styling perspective of mixing high-low, masculine-feminine, expensive-inexpensive, shows off a dichotomy of fashion that is so dynamic and interesting. Her styling is lived in and not too fussy, so even her most glamorous outfits feel very wearable.
Iris Apfel, interior designer, style icon, and self-proclaimed geriatric starlet. This quote of hers sums up perfectly my perspective on fashion and design that I have had a hard time putting so succinctly: “I don’t like a minimalist look for myself. I like stuff; I like being surrounded by a lot of things that give me pleasure to look at.
Tell me more about Moden Essentials?
Moden Essentials is my newest expansion project into the world of lingerie, loungewear, and beyond! With the steady decline of the department store, I found there was a void left in the retail market that provided women a consistent place to go for their intimate apparel needs. We will be offering a full range of lingerie from the basic to the most beautiful, comfortable and elegant sleepwear, luxurious loungewear, and a comprehensive range of wardrobe basics including tees, tanks, and camisoles. My intention is to create a space that you can always rely on to carry the pieces every great wardrobe is built upon!