Apparel

Get to Know: Alchemy Detroit Inc.

Hi Shelley!

Tell us about your brand and your business model.

As a Detroit-native, I spent twenty years building a successful career in corporate America before leaving to take on a new, sartorial challenge as Founder of womenswear label Alchemy Detroit; a menswear-inspired line known for deceptively simple sophistication, flawless construction, and a keen sense of classic lines.

After years of frustration searching for the perfect blazer, only to encounter an increasing trend toward poorly-made, yet still expensive labels, I imagined the welcome return of investment pieces that would last a lifetime.

Alchemy Detroit speaks to Her brilliance, celebrates Her individuality, and supports Her individual style.

THE BRAND: A collection of elevated basics, sophisticated design, made in America.

THE PHILOSOPHY: Born in Detroit, Alchemy allows women to celebrate their individuality, offering timeless garments made from quality fabrics and detailed American craftsmanship. Alchemy prides itself on intentional design that integrates seamlessly and effortlessly into the modern lifestyle, be it board meeting or weekend brunch.

With an ode to bespoke tailors, the collection delivers discerning attention to detail; reimagined for hardworking career women, domestic warriors, young professionals, and mature matriarchs. Our pieces are meant to be worn and lived in. Taking sartorial cues from menswear, our approach embodies Detroit’s proud legacy for American craftsmanship and industrious ingenuity.


What drove you to start your own label? And what have you enjoyed the most so far?

My love of uniform shopping began early in my corporate career. I sought a refined menswear-inspired look, which wasn’t easy to find. On the occasion that I did find a suited piece, I would buy multiples in the same cut and color. As my career advanced, my wardrobe evolved in quality, fit, and fabric. However, along the way, the formality of starched collars, shoulder padded suit coats, and cufflinks gave way to button-down shirts and khaki’s. I was never quite comfortable with the level of ambiguity caused by the business casual movement. I still sought foundational pieces – elevated staples that tied any outfit together – a well tailored jacket, a beautiful scarf, and layering pieces that transitioned from brunch to boardroom. At the time of Alchemy’s launch, I was hard pressed to find a borrowed-from-the-boys version of a classic blazer. And that was it, creating the perfect blazer, the perfect t-shirt, that became my passion, a creation two decades in the making. By far the most amazing part of what I do is fabric selection. It can be an overwhelming experience with the hundreds of selection choices. It’s exciting to hunt for the perfect fabric, the custom button, the softest hand. The entire design process is a true labor of love.


What are one or two big goals you’re focusing on in the next 6 months?

Introducing new fabric selections and expanding the collection. Both require considerable time and investment.

👚 You can learn more about the Alchemy Detroit Inc. Collection here.

🌎 You can shop the Alchemy Detroit Inc. Collection here.

📸 You can connect with Shelley on Instagram here.

StartUp FASHION offers business support and community connection to fashion designers around the world. Join the group, or learn more at The StartUp FASHION Community

StartUp FASHION is an online community where independent designers and emerging brands are coming together, helping one another, forming friendships, collaborating, letting off steam, sharing victories, and belonging to a network of people who get it; who are doing it too.

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