PM Designer Jamie Hayes Voted “Best Local Designer” in Chicago Reader Poll

Thanks, Chicago, for voting me “Best Local Designer”. I’m grate­ful for this beau­ti­ful city and commu­nity that has always been so support­ive of me and my work!I’m excited to show you our next collec­tion: MOVE/REPEAT, debut­ing July 7th at 6:30 pm at Hyde Park Art Center. Addi­tional details can be found here:–07-07-moverepeat-an-evening-of-dance-fashion-music 
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Summer 2017 News & Events

Produc­tion Mode designer, Jamie Hayes, has been nomi­nated as “Best Local Fash­ion Designer” by the Chicago Reader.

Vote here through 6/12 at noon. Thank you for your support!

Saturday, June 24th: Open House & Trunk Show with Lill Street Jewelry & Ceramics

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Join us Satur­day, June 24th, from noon-5 pm at our showroom/production space, Depart­ment of Curiosi­ties for a trunk show featur­ing a curated selec­tion of contem­po­rary haute craft jewelry and ceram­ics from  Lill­street Gallery.  We’ll have liba­tions created and served by Mott Street.  In addi­tion, the Produc­tion Mode collec­tion will be on hand along with Morua and Depart­ment of Curiosi­ties, and as always, you can tour our produc­tion space and try on our wares. 


Open House & Lill­street Gallery Trunk Show
Satur­day, June 24th, noon- 5 pm
Depart­ment of Curiosi­ties
3013 W. Armitage Ave.
Chicago, IL 60647

Production Mode’s New Collection Debuts on July 7th at Hyde Park Art Center!

MOVE/REPEAT: An Evening of Dance, Fash­ion, & Music

The new Produc­tion Mode collec­tion premieres Friday, July 7th, at Hyde Park Art Center with a dance perfor­mance chore­o­graphed by Anna Martine White­head, set pieces by Nuria Montiel Perez Grovas and live elec­tronic music by Damon Locks. The dancers will perform in the collec­tion.

The collec­tion features 5 custom textiles, made of felted merino wool/cotton woven in Chicago by the Weav­ing Mill in collab­o­ra­tion with Nuria Montiel. As always, the collec­tion is designed, cut and sewn in-house at our studio/showroom, Depart­ment of Curiosi­ties. Expect draped, wrapped, and twisted silhou­ettes, combined with soft, tailored pieces–blankets and wraps to cocoon in.


Friday, July 7th
Doors Open | 6:30pm
Perfor­mance Begins | 7pm sharp
Recep­tion + Trunk Show to follow perfor­mance

Hyde Park Art Center
5020 S. Cornell Ave.
Chicago, IL 60615

Recent Press

Thanks to Culture Trip for featur­ing Produc­tion Mode designer, Jamie Hayes, as a Chicago-based designer to watch. And thank you, for watch­ing:) Read more here.


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Thank you to The Brval­ist for featur­ing Produc­tion Mode and for delv­ing into the roman­tic grit of Chicago’s Inde­pen­dent Fash­ion Scene. In Chicago, we are defi­nitely outside of the fash­ion system. I love that this arti­cle featured design­ers that acknowl­edge and embrace this outsider status. We do it by work­ing outside of the tradi­tional fash­ion calen­dar in a slow fash­ion model, making all of our work in-house at our Logan Square atelier. Read more about Chicago’s rich design land­scape here.
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Production Mode Holiday Events


We invite you to view our collec­tion during the holi­days at the follow­ing events …



Decem­ber 1st-4th, we will be at the One of a Kind Show at Chicago’s Merchan­dise Mart. Come see us at Booth #3099, along with our sister brand, Depart­ment of Curiosi­ties.


Satur­na­lia will take over our shop, Depart­ment of Curiosi­ties, from Decem­ber 10–18th! In addi­tion to our in-house lines, Produc­tion Mode, Morua, and DOC, we will also show­case the wares of fellow independent/slow fash­ion design­ers and arti­sans.

In addi­tion, please join us for the follow­ing special events: 

  • Musi­cal perfor­mance by Nick Mazzarella & Damon Locks, Satur­day, Decem­ber 10th 5 pm (free)
  • Saffron Vintage Trunk Show Decem­ber 10th-11th during busi­ness hours
  • The Funda­men­tals of Fragrance: Resins & Woods, Sunday, Decem­ber 11th, 6 pm (tick­eted)
  • Lecture by fash­ion histo­rian Jacque­line Wayne­Guite, Monday, Decem­ber 12th at 6 pm (free)
  • Midnight Kitchen Projects Tast­ing & Demo, Friday, Decem­ber 16th, 7 pm (tick­eted)

Recent Press


Thank you, to Bill­board Maga­zine, and styl­ist Whit­ney Middle­ton, for featur­ing our vegetable tanned leather top on the cover of the recent Grammy preview issue. 


Thanks to Newc­ity Chicago for featur­ing Depart­ment of Curiosi­ties and Produc­tion Mode in 2016’s Best of issue. Read more here!


Thank you for your support, and we hope to see you at one of our holi­day events!

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Production Mode Press: Billboard Magazine Cover

Produc­tion Mode vegetable tanned leather top featured on the cover of Bill­board Maga­zine, as shot by Austin Hargrave, styled by Whit­ney Middle­ton, and worn by Grammy nomi­nee Maren Morris.


And here are more shots of Morris from the print maga­zine, wear­ing a Produc­tion Mode vegetable tanned leather coat, paired with a Depart­ment of Curiosi­ties long­line bra (our sister line, co-designed by PM designer, Jamie Hayes).



And another shot from the Bill­board website of Morris along­side Chicago’s own Chance the Rapper:

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Read more and watch a video of Morris here.


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Interview with Ethical Fashion Site Trusted Clothes (Part Two)

Trusted Clothes, an orga­ni­za­tion devoted to promot­ing ethi­cal and  sustain­able fash­ion, recently inter­viewed me for their blog. Below is another excerpt from Part 2 of the inter­view, writ­ten by Scott Douglas Jacob­sen.

What makes Produc­tion Mode unique?

The propri­etary, exclu­sive mate­ri­als. Also the level of transparency—I share where the mate­ri­als come from and who makes the garments. In fact,  you can come into our studio and see first­hand how things are made.  I would also say the qual­ity of the fit. I consulted with a tech­ni­cal designer with many years of expe­ri­ence work­ing with leather to refine the fit. A lot of time and energy was spent on these patterns. The fit is very good for ready-to-wear, and then can be further refined for people that can come to Chicago for a fitting. That’s some­thing a lot of design­ers don’t offer.

jamie hayes trusted clothes interviewThe Depart­ment of Curiosi­ties Space

Your inau­gural collec­tion consisted of leather that was vegetable tanned from a union­ized shop, Chicago’s Horween tannery. Why the Horween tannery for the inau­gural collec­tion?

For a couple reasons, one was a happy acci­dent. I was discussing the custom print with Paula Wilson, the designer of the print. She said, “What color should the base cloth be?” I refer­enced one of her paint­ings. She said, “Oh, a hide color.” I had a light­bulb moment. I said, “No, no, you should print it on a hide!”

The search then began for the best qual­ity leather. Leather is touchy if you’re talk­ing about “ethi­cal” fash­ion. Some people, under­stand­ably, do not see leather as ethi­cal since an animal must die in order to produce it. I respect and under­stand that.

That said, there are many other issues of ethics in leather produc­tion. I wanted to be as famil­iar with my suppli­ers as possi­ble. And there is one tannery left in Chicago, Horween Leather. They use the process of vegetable tanning– an arti­sanal, tradi­tional way to tan leather that uses organic plant matter such as sticks, barks, and tree extracts. It is a 6-weeks process in contrast to chrome-tanning, which is a 6-hour process.

Chrome-tanning uses chromium, which is a heavy metal and highly carcino­genic. So the choice to use vegetable tanned leather became really clear for me. I didn’t want to use a mate­r­ial that is carcinogenic–especially know­ing that these carcino­gens will end up in our water­ways or land­fills. Also, I learned that vegetable-tanned leather tends to age much better than chrome-tanned leather. So if you think how vintage leather goods get that great patina versus a scuffed, worn out look that is typi­cal nowa­days, that’s the differ­ence between a vegetable tan and a chrome tan.

In terms of the qual­ity, aesthet­ics, the envi­ron­ment, and work­ers’ rights (Horween is a union­ized factory), it was an easy deci­sion to go with Horween. In addi­tion, it is wonder­ful space to visit. It’s less than a mile from my studio, so I can go there when­ever I want and speak to my sales repre­sen­ta­tive. Plus the money I spend with Horween stays within the local econ­omy.

jamie hayes interview trusted clothesJamie pick­ing out leather at Horween tannery

All of these things were serendip­i­tous, and helped provide the direc­tion for the collec­tion. Since Chicago’s fash­ion indus­try is pretty deci­mated at this point, there really aren’t many options in the ways of mills or even fabric reps here in Chicago. Horween is the last tannery left in Chicago.

The hides were designed by Paula J. Wilson, executed by Nora Renick-Rine­hart, and then stitched by Klezar. What is the impor­tance of this network of vari­ous indi­vid­u­als with differ­ent skill-sets to the over­all produc­tion line for the final prod­ucts?

We have this cult of artist or the designer. This idea that the person does every­thing them­selves. Even if you’re amaz­ingly talented and good at everything–designing, print­ing, cutting, and stitch­ing, you’re only one person. You can’t do every­thing. Art and design are always done in collab­o­ra­tion, whether people are trans­par­ent about that or not.

I am not a screen-printer. I am a good stitcher for a designer, but I am noth­ing like Klezar. I do as much as I can myself, espe­cially at first, to educate myself about a process, so that I can better commu­ni­cate with the team. For exam­ple, I did do a few screen-prints on leather. However, there’s no way I could execute anything close to as wonder­ful as Paula and Nora. It takes years and years of prac­tice to achieve their level of exper­tise.

A true collab­o­ra­tion becomes better than the sum of its parts. Every­one is push­ing each other. Every­one is open to new ideas. Hope­fully, what comes out takes you to a place you wouldn’t normally go with your own art work; I like to think that’s what happened with this art collec­tion.

If people want to look more into things, they can look at the showroom/production space, the Depart­ment of Curiosi­ties. What other work are you involved in at this point in time?

A couple of things. I am active in the Chicago Fair Trade, where we are involved in anti-sweat­shop advo­cacy work here in Chicago. Also, I do tech­ni­cal design for other ethi­cal design compa­nies.

At Depart­ment of Curiosi­ties, the space that I share with another designer, Gerry Quin­ton, we recently designed and launched a line of slow fash­ion, ethi­cally made lingerie and night­wear under the name Depart­ment of Curiosi­ties.

jamie hayes interview trusted clothes

Jamie Hayes & Gerry Quin­ton; photo cour­tesy of Frank Maga­zine.

Also, I am going to have a pop-up shop at the theWit Hotel in Chicago in the month of August, and a fash­ion show on August 25th, show­ing both Produc­tion Mode and Depart­ment of Curiosi­ties, at their rooftop space.

I’m launch­ing the next Produc­tion Mode line in the Fall.

And I am involved with the League of Women Design­ers in Chicago.

You mentioned a shared value with Gerry. I suspect this for other collab­o­ra­tions as well. That leaves me to think, “What mean­ing or personal fulfill­ment does this work bring for you?”

So much personal fulfillment—that’s really key to me! I have worked in the fash­ion indus­try since 1999, but I actu­ally left the field for a few years because I was miss­ing that personal fulfill­ment. I had to do some soul search­ing. While I loved the process of design, design­ing and making cloth­ing and express­ing myself though style, I really needed to check in with myself and face what was going on in the indus­try.

First of all, I had to find a way to work in the fash­ion indus­try while still respect­ing a basic ethi­cal framework–one in which people and the earth are respected, and in which we as consumers curb our own consump­tion levels. Also, I needed to ques­tion some of the main tenets of the indus­try. It is common prac­tice in the indus­try to create and promote a culture which makes the consumer feel badly about them­selves. Then we imply that they can solve those body/­self-image issues through purchas­ing things, espe­cially cloth­ing, to make them­selves feel better or to distract them­selves from the ills in their lives.

I had to dig deeper and think, “What’s the social mean­ing of fash­ion? How can style be used in a posi­tive way to build self-esteem, to help a person express their iden­tity and culture – to find out who they are?”

My work post-grad­u­ate school has been guided by these ques­tions and issues. That’s been key to me find­ing personal fulfill­ment in my work.

For me, fabric, color, textures, line and pattern bring me great joy. I hope I bring joy to my clients as well. There’s joy in art and design. All of those things keep me going and bring me great personal satis­fac­tion. I feel lucky to do some­thing that I love that is in line with my values. Sadly, I think that’s a rare thing in our culture right now. I wish it weren’t the case, but I feel lucky to be situ­ated here.

With regard to organizations/companies, and so on, like Trusted Clothes and Produc­tion Mode, what’s the impor­tance of them to you?

It is to show an alter­na­tive to the main­stream. That it is possi­ble to create and purchase ethi­cally-made, well-designed cloth­ing. Also, to get people in the indus­try to ques­tion how things are made, and  hope­fully, to create a sea change.

I look forward to a future where there are no more ethi­cal cloth­ing or aggre­ga­tor sites like Trusted Cloth­ing. Ethi­cal, sustain­able manu­fac­ture should be the norm. Until it is, though, we defi­nitely need to keep spread­ing the word and asking for change in the larger commu­nity.

Thanks to Trusted Clothes and author Scott Douglas Jacob­sen for the inter­view, and for their support of Ethi­cal Fash­ion!

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Interview with Ethical Fashion Site Trusted Clothes

Trusted Clothes, an orga­ni­za­tion devoted to promot­ing ethi­cal and  sustain­able fash­ion, recently inter­viewed me for their blog. Below is an excerpt of the inter­view, writ­ten by Scott Douglas Jacob­sen.



Jaime Hayes interview trusted clothes

Tell us about your­self – family back­ground, personal story, educa­tion, and previ­ous profes­sional capac­i­ties.

I started in the fash­ion indus­try in 1999 in St. Louis, work­ing at a boutique after college, and sewing after my senior year in college because I wanted some­thing hands-on and concrete. I was study­ing English liter­a­ture, and while I loved to read and write, it was abstract and alien­at­ing for me. My person­al­ity type doesn’t mesh with it.

Jaime hayes interview trusted clothes

PM Studio- photo by Damon Locks

It is nice, at the end of the day, to have a pile of work, see what you’ve accom­plished, and in a concrete way. I moved to Chicago to get a second BA at Colum­bia College in Fash­ion Design. I was lucky. I got a job in the indus­try while I in school. It was at a hand­bag company called 1154 Lill Studio.

The company was a real pioneer in mass customiza­tion. As a result, we needed to make every­thing one-by-one, made-to-order, and with a quick turn­around time – three weeks. We made every­thing in-house first and then in the Chicago area. It was a lesson in produc­tion manage­ment and effi­ciency. I was seeing local manu­fac­tur­ers first­hand, which was rare at a time when almost every­body was offshoring.

My conscious­ness was raised in work­ing with contrac­tors and real­iz­ing that a lot of people don’t get paid fairly, making friends with stitch­ers, and hear­ing their stories of immi­gra­tion and exploita­tion in the sewing indus­try. So, I started asking ques­tions and becom­ing consci­en­tious.

Jaime Hayes INterview

100% Wool Felt Top and Vegetable Tanned Leather Skirt. Photo is by Jenni Hamp­shire.

I ended up getting a grad­u­ate degree, a Master’s degree at the Univer­sity Chicago in Social Work. I focused on labor rights in the garment indus­try. I worked as a labor orga­nizer for a few years in Chicago. Primar­ily, I was work­ing with undoc­u­mented, Mexi­can population–frontline work­ers.

I was giving train­ing on worker’s rights and help­ing to orga­nize campaigns in the work place. However, I missed work­ing with my hands—the colors and textures of fashion–the more direct creativ­ity that world affords. Follow­ing this, I joined Chicago Fair Trade and became involved in that move­ment as a volun­teer help­ing to pass a Sweat­free Ordi­nance at the city and county level in Chicago.

Also, I took on a lot of free­lance work with fair trade compa­nies. I worked for SERRV. They sent me to China. I did some work in Peru, in the Lima area. Also, I have done a lot of tech­ni­cal design for local compa­nies in ethi­cal and fair trade fash­ion. Finally, I launched my own line in Janu­ary of 2015.

You argue for a living wage for work­ers. Why is it impor­tant for the sustain­able and ethi­cal fash­ion indus­try?

It is impor­tant across the board. I’m focused on fash­ion because that’s what I do for a living. It is impor­tant in a more global level as well. Fash­ion, cloth­ing, and sewn prod­ucts are some of the most labor inten­sive indus­tries in the whole world. It is a ‘race-to-the-bottom’ indus­try.

Jaime Hayes interview trusted clothes

Hand Burnished Leather Coin Purse- photo by Linda Pulik

Anyone inter­ested in women’s rights, support­ing those most easily exploited, or erad­i­cat­ing poverty, would do well to look at the fash­ion indus­try because that’s the ‘bottom.’ We can find the easily exploited people there.

If these work­ers can be paid well and treated fairly, we can do a lot to improve the rights of women and young girls, erad­i­cate poverty, improve health outcomes, increase liter­acy, and so on. It is a huge issue. We need to be aware of it. In Chicago, the labor move­ment cites $15/hour as the living wage.

So, we pay above that for our stitcher. That’s how we gauge that here, but it is differ­ent in each city and coun­try based on the cost of living in that place.

To sepa­rate two ideas float­ing around in the conver­sa­tion, the phrase “ethi­cal and sustain­able fash­ion,” but this belies two sepa­rate and related ideas. Ethi­cal fash­ion on the one hand; sustain­able fash­ion on the other hand. To start, what is the impor­tance of ethi­cal fash­ion to you?

For me, the impor­tance is the human factor. Nobody should be dying while making our clothes. Even so, 2013 was the dead­liest year on record in the fash­ion indus­try. If you look back histor­i­cally, it is simi­lar to the begin­ning of the 20th century in the US with the Trian­gle Shirt­waist Factory fire. People die while making fash­ion. That’s ridicu­lous.

What we’re speak­ing of when we say ethi­cal fash­ion is really base­line, sadly. People should make a living wage. A wage that allows them to live on and support a family. To be frank, $15/hour in Chicago would not be enough in Chicago, but it’s better than the mini­mum wage in Chicago.

Secondly, people should work in a healthy and safe envi­ron­ment. Sadly, that’s not the case in a lot of the garment indus­try, espe­cially that which is offshored.

What is the impor­tance of sustain­able fash­ion to you?

The issues are simi­lar. There’s over­lap, but sustain­abil­ity refers to the envi­ron­ment and issues affect­ing the planet. I come out of the labor move­ment. So, I am less educated about those issues, but even if you just look at sustain­abil­ity from a human perspec­tive, the health of the planet has huge rami­fi­ca­tions for every­one.

We are all connected. We should care about what is happen­ing on the other side of the world. It is about human rights. We all deserve basic human rights, and beyond that, the abil­ity to thrive and grow. From the human perspec­tive, the pesti­cides that are used to grow our cotton, the petro­leum that is used to create poly­ester, the dyes that are used to create the colors in the fabrics … all of these things affect the work­ers who are apply­ing those pesti­cides or dyes. They go into our water supplies. It is about treat­ing out world well. There is huge over­lap between issues of sustain­abil­ity and ethics.

jamie hayes interview trusted clothes

Hand Screen Printed Leather Jacket; photo by Damien Thomp­son Photog­ra­phy

My favorite term is slow fash­ion because this takes into account the qual­ity of the prod­uct and the design. It’s coming out of and inspired by the slow food move­ment, the tenets of which are to know the prove­nance of this food or, in our case, the cloth­ing. So, where do our clothes come from? What about the raw mate­ri­als like the cotton, wool, poly, or leather? To have trans­parency about that, to appre­ci­ate and value the item, the expe­ri­ence around it, to slow down, buy less, buy higher qual­ity. That’s impor­tant infor­ma­tion to provide as a designer. Because, to be honest, you cannot do every­thing perfectly, espe­cially as a small company. You might not know all of the labor condi­tions in the factory that makes your zippers or buttons, but you can choose the high­est qual­ity zipper.  This can allow the garment to have as long a life as possi­ble.

Some­times, we have to think about compet­ing issues and balance those all out. Slow fash­ion is the most honest way to do that as a designer in my opin­ion.

What was the inspi­ra­tion for Produc­tion Mode – and its title?

(Laughs) Coming out of the labor move­ment, I have done a lot of neo-Marx­ist read­ings. I was think­ing about means of produc­tion and the orga­ni­za­tion of work, and what brings people joy. I was think­ing about that when I named the company.

But the inspi­ra­tion goes way beyond that. At the end of the day, I am a designer. I love fash­ion. I think we need to make a lot of changes in the indus­try, but I love cloth­ing as a means of self-expres­sion. It brings me a lot of joy. I think it brings a lot of people on this planet a lot of joy. It’s an expres­sion of who we are: our culture, iden­tity, values. It doesn’t have to be a super­fi­cial, passive consumer expe­ri­ence.  It could be tailored to fit your body exactly. That’s how it was used for generations—until recently, in fact.

Now, it is a dispos­able thing. It doesn’t have to be that way. One thing I always want to be a part of the company is the concept of artist collab­o­ra­tion. It stretches me as a designer. It makes sure there is some­thing unique about the prod­uct and time­less.

For exam­ple, for the first line that I launched, I collab­o­rated with an artist named Paula J. Wilson. She designed an all-over print for leather. Another artist, Nora Renick-Rine­hart, executed the print and applied it to leather. It is not some­thing seen often with leather. It is limited edition. It is designed by a well-known artist. So, there’s a whole story. I can trace the prove­nance of the mate­ri­als, the print, the execu­tion of the print, etc.

For the next line, which I’ll launch in the Fall of this year, the fabric is designed in collab­o­ra­tion with an artist named Nuria Montiel. It is executed by local weavers called the Weav­ing Mill in Chicago. They are located about a mile from my studio. They have two indus­trial dobby looms. It is a collab­o­ra­tion between the four of us to produce the fabric for the line. It can’t be found anywhere else. It was inspired by Nuria’s art work, influ­enced by the textiles of the Bauhaus move­ment, and Peru­vian and Mexi­can textile tradi­tions.

I’ll post part two soon. Thanks to Trusted Clothes and author Scott Douglas Jacob­sen for the inter­view, and for their support of Ethi­cal Fash­ion!
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Production Mode Summer News

Produc­tion Mode Summer News & Events
100% Wool Felt Top & Vegetable Tanned Leather Skirt by Produc­tion Mode. Photo by Jenni Hamp­shire.

Department of Curiosities Open House

Come join us tomor­row for an Open House at our showroom/production space, Depart­ment of Curiosi­ties! The Produc­tion Mode line will be on-hand and for sale along with our new collec­tion of luxury slow fash­ion lingerie and night­wear, Depart­ment of Curiosi­ties, which we design in collab­o­ra­tion with Gerry Quin­ton of Morua. The DOC line will be avail­able for one final day of special preview pric­ing.

Open House
Satur­day, July 30th
2–6 pm at Depart­ment of Curiosi­ties
3013 W. Armitage Ave.
Chicago, IL 60647


Produc­tion Mode vegetable tanned leather jacket featur­ing print designed by Paula J. Wilson. Photo by Sarah Ann Wright of model Miss Deadly Red.

Production Mode + theWit 

During the month of August, Produc­tion Mode we will be setting up shop at  theWit Hotel. TheWit Hotel is located at 201 N. State St. in Chicago’s down­town Loop. Boutique hours are W-F 2–7 pm and Sat 12–7 pm.

We end August with our first Fash­ion Show, at ROOF, the beau­ti­ful atrium space atop theWit Hotel. Sip a cock­tail and enjoy the work of Produc­tion Mode and Depart­ment of Curiosi­ties against the back­drop of Chicago’s grand skyline.Save the date: the show will be on Thurs­day, August 25th at 7 pm. Space is limited so we recom­mend arriv­ing early.

Produc­tion Mode designer Jamie Hayes at Chicago’s Horween Tannery
Inter­view with Trusted Clothes
Trusted Clothes, an orga­ni­za­tion dedi­cated to link­ing people, brands, and orga­ni­za­tions that are ethi­cal, envi­ron­men­tally friendly, and health conscious, recentlly published an in-depth inter­view on Produc­tion Mode designer Jamie Hayes. To learn more about our process and ethos, read the arti­cle here.
Yarn on the warp at the Weav­ing Mill for Produc­tion Mode’s next collec­tion
Produc­tion Mode Fall 2016 Collec­tion Coming Soon! Stay tuned for the launch of Produc­tion Mode’s next collec­tion, made of a custom wool/cotton fabric, based on sketches by artist Nuria Montiel, as inter­preted by the Weav­ing Mill, a new small-scale mill down the street from Produc­tion Mode in Chicago’s Humboldt Park neigh­bor­hood. Nuria’s sketches were inspired by the weav­ings from the Bauhaus move­ment, and Peru­vian and Mexi­can textile tradi­tions. This month we’ll be devel­op­ing the line at our pop-up at theWit Hotel. Stop by and watch it come together. And stay tuned for our launch date, some­time in the Fall of 2016.
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Department of Curiosities Lingerie & Nightwear Collection Launch


Silk Charmeuse Beach Paja­mas by Depart­ment of Curiosi­ties


Two years ago marked a big step forward in my career- I moved to a new produc­tion space and show­room: Depart­ment of Curiosi­ties. A collab­o­ra­tion with fash­ion designer Gerry Quin­ton and her line Morúa, our part­ner­ship has cautiously and lovingly evolved from a shared studio, to a shop, exhi­bi­tion space, and most recently a collec­tion of luxury, slow fash­ion lingerie.  I can’t speak enough to the power of this collaboration–Gerry and I have very compli­men­tary skill sets, and even more impor­tantly when one of us falls, the other is there to lend a hand, offer­ing encour­ag­ing words, tech­ni­cal support, a loan, or a trip to “horri­ble Joann” to pick up a yard of inter­fac­ing that we some­how always forget to order.  (More on our collab­o­ra­tion is here in a wonder­ful, in-depth arti­cle in Frank Maga­zine.)

It’s no surprise that our first collec­tion is inspired by the lumi­nous women of the 1920s-1940s: strong women who were enter­ing the work force in large numbers for the first time and running facto­ries during WWII; the compli­cated, dark-yet-elegant women of film noir; and the liber­ated flap­pers of the 1920s.

We are thrilled to present this true labor of love. Created from Ital­ian silks, the line features an exclu­sive print designed by renowned tattoo artist Esther Garcia of Butter­fat Studios and is made to order in-house, in order to ensure the high­est qual­ity of produc­tion and that our pieces are ethi­cally made. The collec­tion will avail­able for preorder on June 18–19th. As a show of grat­i­tude to early support­ers of local, Amer­i­can made fash­ion, the collec­tion will be offered at special preview prices. Your support is crucial–preorders will help us to meet fabric mini­mums and to complete our e-commerce website. Thank you in advance!

Preview hours are:
Satur­day, June 18th: 1–7 pm; cock­tails 7–9 pm
Sunday, June 19th: 2–5 pm
& by appoint­ment

3013 W. Armitage Ave.
Chicago, IL 60647

Please follow us on face­book and insta­gram: @departmentofcuriosites


Silk/Cotton Long­line Bra & Knick­ers in Dark Trop­i­cal, and Dress­ing Gown in Noir Trop­i­cal by Depart­ment of Curiosi­ties


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Production Mode Spring 2016 Events & News

Vegetable tanned leather top and skirt by Produc­tion Mode. Photo by Sarah Ann Wright. Modeled by Miss Deadly Red.

Chicago- Sunday, March 20th, Produc­tion Mode will be at the Promon­tory as part of Hyde Park Hand­made. The show features local arti­sans and farm­ers, with a sound­track provided by deejay Sean Alvarez. Admis­sion is free, the bar is open, and brunch is served down­stairs. Come join us!




Chicago- Sunday, May 15th, Produc­tion Mode will be at the Chicago Cultural Center as part of the Dose Lake FX Market­place. The best of Chicago design will be on offer, 10 am- 4 pm.

The stun­ning dome of the Chicago Cultural Center. Photo by Time­out Chicago.


Paris- Satur­day, April 9th & Sunday, April 10th, Produc­tion Mode will be in Paris at La Boutique Ephémère, Galerie Joseph 7 rue Frois­sart Paris3. Hours are noon- 8p on Satur­day, and noon- 7p on Sunday. Nous espérons vous voir!



London- March 29-April 2– Produc­tion Mode will be in London for a photo shoot. Please contact to make an appoint­ment to view the line … And if you’re plan­ning a trip to Chicago, check out Virgin Atlantic’s neigh­bor­hood guide to Logan Square, which features Produc­tion Mode.
Detroit- Deep Design: Pace, Place, and Person­hood in Design for the Social Sector featur­ing work by Jamie Hayes, designer/owner of Produc­tion Mode, will be on view at the Elaine L. Jacob Gallery at Wayne State Univer­sity through March 25th. Thanks to Linda Pulik of Bao Design Lab for creat­ing and facil­i­tat­ing a work­shop on the expe­ri­ence of wear­ing uniforms as part of the Wayne State show. Book forth­com­ing!

View of the Uniform project instal­la­tion at “Deep Design” exhibit at the Elaine L. Jacob Gallery. Photo by Laura Makar.



Produc­tion Mode is honored to be featured in a recent Crain’s Chicago Busi­ness story on slow fash­ion. Read more about slow fash­ion here. Also featured in the arti­cle is our produc­tion space/showroom Depart­ment of Curiosi­ties. We are thrilled to announce that in May of 2016, Jamie Hayes of Produc­tion Mode and Gerry Quin­ton of Morua will launch a line of slow fash­ion lingerie under the Depart­ment of Curiosi­ties label, made in-house of silks produced by a mill in the Lake Como region of Italy, featur­ing a print designed by Esther Garcia of Butter­fat Studios. 

Read Virgin Atlantic’s neigh­bor­hood guide to Logan Square, which features Produc­tion Mode and our showroom/studio, Depart­ment of Curiosi­ties. We are proud to be part of such a vibrant neigh­bor­hood!
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Production Mode F/W 2015 Events & News

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Gray’s Depart­ment Store: A Shopable Instal­la­tion of Work by the League of Women Design­ers

From Decem­ber 4th-20th, the Depart­ment of Curiosi­ties, the space co-run by Produc­tion Mode & Morua, will host a shopable instal­la­tion by members of the League of Women Design­ers (LWD). Eve Fine­man will curate the show draw­ing on the golden age of depart­ment stores for visual inspi­ra­tion. Our boutique space will be trans­formed with sections for house­wares, light­ing, furni­ture, cloth­ing, jewelry, hand­bags and lingerie. Partic­i­pat­ing design­ers are listed above. A link to the Gray’s Depart­ment Store exhibit cata­logue, designed by Dani Soukup, can be found here.

The show’s name refer­ences Eileen Gray, a touch­stone for LWD group. Gray was a pioneer of modernist design; an archi­tect and designer of furni­ture, textiles and inte­ri­ors. Her influ­en­tial works in the 1920s and 30s were largely over­looked in her time and the impor­tance of her legacy remains unrec­og­nized to this day. One of her most inno­v­a­tive works, the Villa E-1027 house, for instance, was first attrib­uted to her lover, Jean Badovice, and was later defaced by the most famous archi­tect of her day, Le Corbusier.

Open hours are Tues­day-Satur­day from 12–7 pm, and Sunday from 12–5 pm. Exhibit­ing design­ers will staff the shop along with Produc­tion Mode and Morua, so stop in to learn more about each line’s design and manu­fac­tur­ing process–most of the design­ers in the show manu­fac­ture locally. Also on hand will be a preview of Depart­ment of Curiosi­ties’ first collec­tion, a slow fash­ion, ethi­cally-made line of silk lingerie inspired by the women of the 1930s. The line is co-designed by Jamie Hayes of Produc­tion Mode and Gerry Quin­ton of Morua.

The open­ing recep­tion, spon­sored by KOVAL distillery, is on Decem­ber 4th from 6–9 pm. In addi­tion, save the date for a pop-up dining event by Midnight Kitchen Projects on the evening of Satur­day, Decem­ber 12th.

The Depart­ment of Curiosi­ties is located at 3013 W. Armitage Ave., Chicago, IL 60647.


Another chance to shop local & shop small: at Dose Market at Morgan Manu­fac­tur­ing on Sunday, Dec. 13. More details and tick­ets can be found here.


We’re honored to announce that Past Perfect: UNIFORM, designed in collab­o­ra­tion with 24 partic­i­pants, will be shown from Janu­ary 15- March 25, 2016, at Wayne State Univer­sity in Detroit as part of the Deep Design Exhibit.

Deep Design: Pace, Place, and Person­hood in Design for the Social Sector.

This exhibit will focus on design­ers and archi­tects who are work­ing in ways that reflect strong and endur­ing commit­ments to people and places and where the human rela­tion­ship between designer and design recipient/s take prece­dent over design produc­tion. This exhibit advo­cates for design­ers who ques­tion the tran­sient nature of how we do design work today, which can some­times result in ideal­ized impo­si­tions instead of cultur­ally and econom­i­cally sensi­tive solu­tions. This body of work will begin to exem­plify how design­ers can and do commit to place and people- in mind, in body, and in prac­tice- in order to enter into truly co-creative rela­tion­ships and expe­ri­ences.

This exhi­bi­tion will work to bring aware­ness to the tensions and debates that exist in design prac­tice as indi­vid­u­als and orga­ni­za­tions work to create real, last­ing value in the social sector: the project-based engage­ment vs. versus long-term embed­ded­ness; archi­tec­ture as profes­sion­al­ized activ­ity vs. archi­tect­ing as a human right; tech­nol­ogy and connec­tiv­ity as a means for both social alien­ation and shared rebel­lion.


Thanks also to the Chicago­ist for naming Produc­tion Mode as one of the best new fash­ion lines in Chicago. Many of the lines featured are manu­fac­tured using ethi­cal, fair trade, and slow fash­ion models. We are happy, for once, to be trendy! Read more here.


We’re also honored to be named as the Best New Fash­ion Line in Chicago by New City. Read more here!

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