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About The Cloth

Celebrating Caribbean Heritage, Crafting Decolonial Narratives

Since its establishment in 1986 by Creative Director Robert Young, The Cloth has transcended mere fashion to become a symbol of Caribbean representation in the global design landscape. With nearly four decades of legacy, Young’s creations embody wearable art that resonates deeply with displaced communities, encapsulating the essence of the Caribbean diaspora. The appliqué techniques he developed continue to be one of the hallmarks of the brand which has dressed steelpan bands, Carnival revelers, dignitaries, renowned performers and movement leaders. 

Sartorial Techniques of Caribbean Culture

The Cloth embraces anti-fit and anti-tailoring principles, crafting cocooning silhouettes that defy conventional norms. Rooted in the region’s rich history, sartorial techniques pay homage to pivotal moments such as the Cuban and Haitian Revolutions. Fine tucks reference the Guayabera shirt of Cuba, while cargo pockets and epaulets echo the uniforms of the region’s revolutionary leaders. Vèvès, symbolic drawings from Haitian Vodou rituals, serve as inspiration in intricate appliqué designs.

A JUST RENAISSANCE

Under the leadership of the Creative Director Robert Young and CEO Sophie Bufton, an anthropologist by training, an audacious ambition lies at the core of The Cloth’s mission: to construct an unbroken, 100% Made-in-the-Caribbean value chain for West Indian Sea Island Cotton (WISIC).
In partnership with Exclusive Cottons of The Caribbean, The Cloth now offers its first collection made from this rare cotton, grown exclusively in the Caribbean archipelago. With only 100 bales produced annually it is the world’s rarest cotton variety. The cotton we work with today is grown in Barbados, manufactured in Switzerland, and designed and made in Trinidad and Tobago. 

Craftsmanship and Engagement 

At our atelier in Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago, each piece undergoes meticulous craftsmanship, employing bio-based fabrics sourced transparently from around the world. Engaging with our community, we host quarterly panel discussions on social justice and equity, fostering positive change locally and beyond