Houston sisters Kailey and Kaygan Tissue don't believe in a lot of fashion rules. "When it comes to clothes, I don't have a lot of rules," said Kailey, with a glance at Kaygan, who nodded in agreement. "It's about wearing clothes that make you feel great. Part of that is knowing what looks good on your body, but fashion is about making you feel great--so you should wear what makes you feel great!"
Kailey paused, and then added, "Well--except for wearing leggings with short shirts. I'm all about leggings, but a little bit of modesty is good--leggings call for longer shirts!"[jump]
Born and raised in Houston, Kailey and Kaygan Tissue present a united--and fashionable--front. As we spoke in the home retail space from which the women run their online boutique, Kissue, Kaygan was relaxed in a black jumpsuit, while Kailey wore a floral blazer over chic neutrals. With an eye toward opening their own Houston flagship store by 2015, the sisters saw no reason to wait to begin building their brand while Kaygen finishes up her degree in fashion merchandising at Texas Christian University. (Kailey graduated from the University of Florida in 2012.) "Our dream has always been to design and manufacture our own line, but when we were thinking about how to get the ball rolling we came up with the online boutique. We bring in vendors and brands we love and sell them through Kissue. It's allowed us to get our name out there, to grow a customer base, and establish a following." Launching the online boutique allows Kaygen to work from Fort Worth, even during the school year.
When choosing items to stock the online boutique, Kaylie and Kaygen rely on their own aesthetic: clean lines, interesting fabrics, structural shapes, and heavy on the neutrals. "We like neutral colors, and modern design. We don't like a lot of patterns or 'clutter', and black-and-white is our favorite [color palette]," explained Kaygen, with Kailey adding, "It's important for fashion designers to stay true to themselves, but also think about the customer and what they want--it's a balance."
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