MEet KEVWE MOWARIN:
THE 24 YEAR-OLD FOUNDER OF KOVIEM CREATES CUSTOM SUITS FOR WOMEN
By Katrina Froelich
8 · 4 · 19
Kevwe Mowarin knows suits. More specifically she knows women’s suits. The 24 year-old entrepreneur, who got a big-time finance gig right out of college, ditched her six-figure job in 2017 to launch her own company, Koviem. Designed for women, by women, the luxury clothing brand is the first of its kind, offering a collection of custom two-piece suits catered towards the working women. And the young designer isn’t joking when she says custom: Perhaps the coolest part of Koviem is its sizing feature on the website, which uses AI technology to calculate exact measurements for customers. While some might be turned off by the pieces’ hefty $600 price-tag, the boastful cost also represents the modern woman’s freedom to make her own money -- and spend it as she pleases.
We sat down with with Mowarin to talk suits, power and fashion.
What gave you the idea for Koviem?
Necessity was the mother of invention. Back when I was in banking, I often had to wear a suit. I was frustrated by how difficult the process was to find something that fit properly. I’m tall and lanky so everything I bought had to be altered or eventually returned. The ease at with my male co-workers could get a suit amazed me and I wanted to create a similar experience for women. Koviem was born.
What makes your pantsuits different? What makes a “good” pantsuit for women?
A good pantsuit fits! The vision of Koviem is quite simple. I want to make buying clothes that fit a fast and easy process. That’s what makes Koviem different. Each suit is made with the specific measurements input by the client. You no longer need to worry about guessing your size, reading confusing size charts or spending forever getting fitted. Koviem suits are also made sustainably. Since everything is custom, there is no wasted inventory or dead stock. The clothing industry is extremely wasteful as it can be difficult to estimate demand for specific products. It is nice knowing that Koviem is a company that is doing something good for women and for the environment.
Why do pantsuits make you feel powerful?
The pantsuit is a universally recognizable symbol of power. Regardless of where you are in the world, people tend to pay more attention when you’re wearing a suit. When that suit fits properly, you feel even more powerful as you can take your mind off what you are wearing and focus on more important things like the task at hand.
Men have been wearing custom suits for ages. Why has it taken so long for women to get their own custom suits?
Suiting is tied to power. As more of the powerful positions are being occupied by women, a change has been catalyzed. Women are starting to demand equal opportunities and experiences not only in the boardroom but in social settings. This is evident in the rise and success of other brands that have created a feminine experience in masculine fields. For instance, The Wing created a place for professional women as they were historically excluded from the “boys clubs.” Bumble transferred more power to the hands of women in the world of online dating. Koviem is doing the same as these other companies by starting with suits.
What is the biggest appeal of custom clothing for customers?
Each piece is made with your unique measurements so you can ensure that it fits. When something is custom, you can also personalize it in ways that are impossible for off-the-rack clothing. One way my clients like to personalize their suits is by choosing the option to have their initials embroidered inside the jacket. Although the monogram is concealed, it’s such a unique feeling knowing that the suit your wearing is completely different from any other suit out there.
How does your website’s AI sizing feature work?
The digital sizing technology uses spatial referencing to calculate your radial measurements. All one needs to input is their height. With two photos, the API can calculate all the measurements we need to ensure a well-fitted suit.
How many suits should every woman own?
This completely depends on the woman and her lifestyle. I’ve noticed that more women are wearing suits outside of the office in more casual settings. As the trend continues, I can see women adding suits to their closets at a higher frequency.
What’s the one fashion item you can’t live without?
Earrings! I think a great pair can really take your look to a new level. My love for this accessory is a relic of my upbringing as my mother always made sure my sister and I had on earrings whenever we went out. I continued that practice into adulthood and now take pride in investing in my jewelry. Funny enough, I often leave the house without makeup but never without earrings.
Starting your own company is a pretty big deal. If you could give your past self any advice, what would it be?
People are going to have an opinion about everything you do. You might as well give them something big to talk about. Initially, I let fear of criticism keep me from launching products, pursuing campaigns and taking on high-profile clients. My advice to anyone starting a business is to seek advice, but be true to yourself and go with your gut. You are generally right!