To say you are passionate about your job is an understatement for Elizabeth Blankenship, CEO and co-founder of Coton. Coton is a fully sustainable luxury fashion brand with a focus on utilizing existing materials to deliver premium clothing while also reducing both the company and the consumer’s collective carbon footprint.
Elizabeth was inspired to launch Coton after her sixth year in the luxury fashion industry when she got her first peek “behind the curtain” into the often disturbing reality of fashion manufacturing. While managing domestic development and production for fashion brand Proenza Schouler, she identified a need to fight against rampant wastage normalized by the industry and a need to eliminate the harmful chemicals used to dye fabric. Shortly after being chased out of a Los Angeles based dye-house by a concerned manufacturing operator, the operator informed her that the toxins in the dye were known to cause infertility in women who experienced extended exposure to the chemicals used during the process. While she was deeply disturbed by the information, instead of giving up on an industry in need of reform, Elizabeth decided to launch Coton.
Coton’s mission is to challenge the status quo behind the wasteful and environmentally unfriendly practices that currently dominate luxury fashion. As a former manager of product from initial design through production, with a special focus on sourcing textiles, Elizabeth has intimate knowledge of the industry practices. Every luxury brand operating today has leftover fabrics at the end of the season, and these high-quality, well designed materials typically go to waste. Elizabeth, alongside co-founder and COO Alyssa Blankenship, are saving the “undesirable” leftover textiles from landfills, incinerators, and additional dyeing treatments. Using these upcycled textiles, they deliver high quality, fashion forward, ethical products that appeal to consumers who believe in sustainable fashion.
As a brand that believes in modern luxury, Coton will support you on your journey to becoming more socially and environmentally responsible while looking and feeling your best. Regardless of your gender, size, or age, Coton welcomes you. Shopping today is about more than just what you buy; it can also be a statement on what you stand for.
To stay informed about the latest Coton products, you can sign up for the mailing list on www.thecoton.com or follow Coton on Instagram. There is a component of scarcity present in Coton’s fabrications, with some materials only yielding 5-10 units, which inherently creates rare, unique pieces. Feel confident in the way you look while breaking away from the wasteful and harmful fashion cycle by supporting Coton and following the company closely so you don’t miss out on the perfect piece for you!
About the Founders:
Elizabeth and Alyssa have been friends for eight years and sisters-in-law for five. They started working full time on Coton in 2020 while attending two of the world’s best business schools.
Coton’s Chief Executive Officer and co-founder Elizabeth Blankenship is uniquely suited to guide the companies’ creative operations with her proven track record of creating sellable product, including designing the ninth most popular product globally in the first quarter of 2019. With seven years of experience designing for luxury brands in New York, she has deep ties in the industry with a wide network extending from fellow luxury designers to fabric mills and manufacturers across the world. She holds a BFA from the Fashion Institute of Technology, a Graduate Diploma from Central Saint Martins (University of the Arts London), and is currently earning an MBA at the University of Virginia Darden School of Business.
As Coton’s Chief Operating Officer and co-founder, Alyssa Balkenship spearheads logistics, operations, and accounting. Alyssa has ten years of experience in Financial Planning and Corporate Strategy within the FinTech, Consulting, and Consumer industries. She holds a BA in Economics from Yale University, where she was a four-year member of the women’s hockey team. Alyssa graduated with an MBA from the University of Michigan Ross School of Business in May 2021 and now works full time at Coton.