— By Hannah Dorss —
Since graduating from John Paul the Great Catholic University in 2011, Colleen Monroe has kept busy pursuing a career in entertainment and fashion. In New York City, she began in costume design on HBO’s award-winning show Boardwalk Empire and then eventually moved out to L.A. to continue working in the design field for projects with Warner Brothers, 20th Century Fox, History Channel, Mattel, and Disney. Since then, she’s also used her talents in producing to manage projects for a creative agency, work in events and development for the L.A. Opera, and now as a freelance floral designer and stylist to support her entrepreneurial lifestyle.
Most recently, however, Colleen has taken on a new entrepreneurial venture with her fashion startup in L.A. called Untucked Workwear.
According to Colleen, her purpose in launching Untucked was “to disrupt the current fashion industry with a fresh and ethical approach to manufacturing, and design beautiful workwear you’ll want to live in everyday.” To this end, Colleen has begun designing, producing, and selling quality clothing that is functional yet professional.
Untucked Workwear was inspired by Colleen’s own experiences in New York city, where she lived an “on the go” life full of both creative endeavors and professional environments. In the big city, she had some trouble figuring out what outfits to wear every day, so she finally decided to take the step of creating something that would fit her needs.
Her clothing designs reflect a changing world, where professionalism is still important despite casual workspaces, flexible work schedules, and lots of commuting. “I saw that there was a need for consciously made women’s workwear and commuter apparel,” she explains. “I wanted some kind of cool uniform that communicated creative and professional, while feeling incredibly comfortable at the same time.”
When Colleen moved to Los Angeles, she began a period of research and designing. Before long, she had assembled a team and formed a partnership with a small factory in L.A. In May of 2017, her company launched an online store by taking pre-orders on Kickstarter, and they exceeded 150% of their funding goal.
Colleen currently has one clothing line called the “Perfect Working Outfit,” which she is planning on expanding into the “Perfect Working Wardrobe.” Working women on the go are her main target customers, but she is not limiting herself to designing women’s clothing; she’d like to design clothing for men too.
At this point, Colleen is still designing and growing her fashion company, and she has lots of ideas for the future. She would love to collaborate with local artists to make unique, modern prints; she also dreams of having her own factory in Los Angeles to base her entire operation. At that factory, Colleen’s goal would be to actively support her workers’ quality of life by ensuring good working conditions; her desire is to provide employment opportunities for displaced workers and high-risk youth.
Colleen Monroe has done what many people only talk of: she has followed her dreams and worked tirelessly for them. Her vision of a functional, beautiful, everyday, yet professional clothing line has caught the attention of many other entrepreneurs and locals. She is a powerful testament to creating one’s own opportunities, by using creativity and entrepreneurship to provide something valuable to the community.
To follow the progress of Untucked Workwear and explore their clothing line, check out the links below: