Designer Mollie Burch champions women with Crosby clothing line.
When Mollie Crosby Burch was a child, tottering around in high heels and oversized dresses for the sheer joy of it, little did she know her passion for fashion would evolve from pretend play to the real world. Today, the 30-year-old Atlanta designer is not only dressing women around the country in her easy, breezy clothing line, Crosby by Mollie Burch, she’s using the Insta-worthy brand to bring attention to a powerful social cause.
“We’re distinguished by our vibrant designs, so we coined the slogan #ShineYourBright to empower women to be their boldest, brightest selves in their own lives and in the lives of others,” Burch says. The company has also delivered on its founding mission to fight social injustice, donating more than $35,000 to Wellspring Living to aid victims of sex trafficking. “It’s an incredible nonprofit that works to rescue and restore the lives of women and children, and we’re honored to be able to give back and spread awareness.” Burch attributes the brand’s success to a savvy business plan, hatched in collaboration with partner Taylor Montes de Oca when the two were fresh out of college, sharing an apartment in Buckhead. Both are University of Virginia alums; Burch majored in fashion, and Montes de Oca studied business.
The dynamic duo launched Crosby by Mollie Burch in October 2015. They’ve been profitable since sales began in 2016—an industry feat even more impressive in the wake of a global pandemic. With an Atlanta office and showroom that employs seven women, the nationally recognized brand is carried by 200 boutiques, including Poppy’s of Atlanta in Buckhead, where fashionistas flock for the preppy pieces. “We’ve been selling there since we started with an incredibly supportive customer base,” Burch says.
What’s to love about the line?
We’re known for our imaginative use of color and original prints in easy-to wear feminine silhouettes. I’m super intentional about designing pieces that will appeal to women of all ages and body types, so the fits are flattering for mothers, daughters and grandmothers alike. Our goal is to create fun collections for modern-day women to celebrate who they are through what they wear. Customers love the flowy pieces, where the print is what’s really making the statement.
How did you get the ball rolling?
We had to nail down what our mission was and build out a step-by-step plan. We formed an LLC and raised $20,000 through a Kickstarter campaign that paid for our first round of production of goods. I created 18 pieces for the first collection, and a sample set was made. We hit the road and did 21 trunk shows all over the Southeast in a month’s time. We lived on wine and cheese boards and stayed with family and friends. The shows generated incredible wholesale demand, so that side of the business is bigger than the direct consumers we were reaching online.
Where do you get your design ideas?
I have a great passion for art, and I’m inspired by the beauty of nature and unexpected color palettes. That’s where the prints come into play. I see the world in print, like walking down the sidewalk and seeing a cool leaf shadow. I’ve had that lens for a long time. I also hone in on where trends are going and follow innovative designers like Wes Gordon at Carolina Herrera.
We’re in the midst of launching our spring collection, and we have some exciting home collaborations in the works as we expand into a lifestyle brand with more products in our prints like throw pillows and curtains. We’ve got new headbands and masks, as well as a couple of graphic tees for lounging options.
CROSBY BY MOLLIE BURCH
Contributing Writer, Simply Buckhead; journalist and graphic designer