HOUSE OF ST. CLAIR
DESIGNER: CARSON MONAHAN
WHY DO YOU CALL AUSTIN HOME
So many reasons! Community, creativity, food, music, the landscape, space, arts, I could go on!
FAVORITE SONG/ARTIST/ALBUM FOR A SPARK OF CREATIVITY
I always seem to go back to one of my all-time favorite albums (for many reasons), Power of Soul, by Idris Muhammad. It’s a creative force and it gives me a renewed sense of self every time I listen to it. Especially the tracks “Piece of Mind” and “Loran’s Dance”. Also a nice little MF DOOM sample in there as well..
BIGGEST DEBATE OF ALL: COFFEE or TEA, BE SPECIFIC ;)
Coffee for sure. We make a pour-over every morning and it is such an important part of my morning routine. The whole act from making to sipping gets the ole brain on track.
WHO DO YOU FOLLOW FOR INSTAGRAM INSPIRATION
@natgeo, @shigeto, @_nitch @minutes.fi @ashworthchris and my beautiful fiancé @laurenkirby
GO TO MID-DAY SNACK or ROUTINE FOR CREATIVE FUEL
A few sips of coffee, one of my favorite art books or magazines (currently cereal and the new order which are available in our shop), and sketching.
WHERE DO YOU DESIGN BEST? EX: HOME, STUDIO, NATURE, ETC.
For me, the studio. I always have a mood board there going for inspiration and being connected to the shop keeps my energy and drive going. The design process never stops!
WHY DID YOU CHOOSE TO BEGIN THE HOUSE OF ST. CLAIR ADVENTURE
I always had a dream of designing my own collection one day. I also grew up in a small business setting, my dad’s to be specific, and that’s where I feel most comfortable. Being able to have creative freedom is priceless.
WHAT HAS BEEN THE MOST EXCITING MOMENT SO FAR OF HOUSE OF ST. CLAIR
Presenting each season in NYC is always an honor and very exciting, but opening the shop last spring had to stand out the most. Designing interiors, and curating products are amongst my top passions, along with fashion design.
HOW DO YOU MAKE SURE YOUR BRAND STANDS OUT
Season after season, I create a new collection that feels new and different, but distinctively House of St. Clair. All of our fabric is sourced in Japan, The UK, Italy, or Portugal, cut and sewn in the USA and quality checked to ensure our standards are met. We guarantee our product, and match it with our customer service. We want HOSC to be a community where all are welcome and to bring like minds together.
WHO HAS HAD THE MOST CREATIVE INFLUENCE ON YOUR LIFE
My dad for sure. He is an incredible artist, musician, designer, cook, and business owner.
HOW HAS SOCIAL HELPED YOUR BRAND
As the brand continues to grow, social is one of the best ways for people to discover us. Whether its directly from us or one of our stockists, the reach has no boundaries. We’re still trying to wrap our heads around that :/
WHAT OTHER ARTISTS HAVE YOU LOVED COLLABORATING WITH, IF ANY
I love collaborating with my good friend and super talented designer, Dustin Coffey (of Magdalene Leather among other ventures).
TELL US ABOUT THE IMPORTANCE OF SUSTAINABLE FASHION (SPECIFIC TO YOUR SOURCING FROM JAPAN AND UK)
Right now we are working on some bags and home goods. Sustainable fashion is one of the reasons I wanted to start the brand. There aren’t a lot of small, independent men’s designers that are eco-conscious and I think it’s important to help provide that option. The abundance of fast-fashion and “throwaway clothes” is a leading cause of pollution and has been named the second dirtiest industry in the world, next to big oil. The responsibility I feel as a brand is to advocate for quality items that build one’s closet over time and that others will want to inherit once they’re done with them.
HOW IMPORTANT IS SHOPPING LOCAL TO YOU
Very, very, very important! Local shops, events, musicians, artists, etc. are what makes a community unique. Growing up in a family that was supported by one, I was taught the importance of community support from a young age. It is also why I prefer to work with small boutiques when we wholesale our product.
HOW HAS THE AUSTIN COMMUNITY SUPPORTED YOU
There are so many ways the community supports the creative fields here. A lot people who decide to call Austin home do so because of the unique traits our city has and, in large part as I said before, that’s due to the small business and creative community. I think we as a community acknowledge that and make a point to get out and support. There a lot of brands and designers that have built themselves up here, and it all starts with the support of the community.
WOULD YOU BE OPEN TO A DESIGN COLLAB WITH A LOCAL AUSTIN ARTIST
Yes! There are so many I admire.
WHAT IS ONE THING YOU WISH PEOPLE KNEW ABOUT HOUSE OF ST. CLAIR
The painstaking attention to detail.
AUSTIN INSIDER RECOMMENDATIONS
MUST-SEE RECOMMENDATION(S) FOR THOSE TRAVELING TO AUSTIN
James Turrell’s The Color Inside at sunrise. A swim and a beer at Deep Eddy. A Veracruz taco and coffee at Radio, then walk over to do some record shopping at End of an Ear.
FAVORITE LOCAL FOOD TRUCK
Patritzi’s, Veracruz, El Primo, DEE DEE
FAVORITE LOCAL CURATED BOUTIQUE
Ours :) Take Heart, Esby, Miranda Bennett, Kick Pleat
FAVORITE LOCAL COFFEE SHOP(S)
Figure 8, Brew & Brew, Primo.
WHERE CAN SUPPORTERS FIND YOUR DESIGNS
You can come visit our Flagship at the corner of 12th and Chicon here in Austin or of course visit us online. We are currently in boutiques in Japan, the US, and Europe. Check our stockists page to find a store near you!