I am Cindi, the C in by the C. The NAME behind the brand. A lifetime resident of Medicine Hat, I have been immersed in the customer service side of fashion for many years and have developed a thorough understanding of the key pieces that make women feel special. I ultimately realized that I had a deep desire to take the effortless wardrobe staple item, the boyfriend blazer, and elevate it by designing it around themes inspired by art, music, film and fashion.
by the C is my brainchild. On January 1st, 2011, while out for lunch with my husband Dale, the idea for creating "Blazers with a Personality" hit me. by the C was created and we spent the next couple of years working on logistics. In the spring of 2015, I met Sandra - a wonderfully skilled seamstress. I told her my vision and she was able to create my dream. The first blazer "off the presses" was "Well Heeled." I gave it to my mom and we both cried! We made 25 different prototypes, making changes along the way. During this time, I was busy looking for a factory that could produce my blazers...a factory in Canada. I finally found a factory in Toronto with just the right expertise to produce my designs. by the C was launched in July, 2016! A storefront and a website soon followed.
Since the brand’s inception, my vision has grown into a successful business. The timeless designs are a colourful mix of materials and are combined with cultural references, creating blazers that merge feminine with masculine, and classic with contemporary. While my aesthetic style continues to evolve, my commitment to quality and vision remains unchanged.
All by the C blazers have a unique NAME embroidered on the inside lining. Buttons, lining and other intricate details are selected to match their NAME. Currently, we have 32 NAMED blazers. “Olive Another” has olive green lining, olive green Swarovski crystal buttons and three embroidered olives tumbling out of the breast pocket (make sure to try this on with the “Olive Another” watch and T-shirt!). There is a martini glass with the words “Bottoms Up” embroidered on the lower rear portion of this fun blazer! “Out of the Blue” has luxurious royal blue lining, with gorgeous Swarovski crystal buttons. The lining in “Horsin’ Around” is, guess? You got it, horses. The cloth horse buttons on this blazer were made especially for by the C. Newly arrived design, “Tusk Because” features black and white elephant lining with a small elephant embroidered on the back. We call them “Blazers with a Personality!” Many details define my blazers. My NAME, my signature, is embroidered on the inside of each blazer, under the embroidered Canadian Maple Leaf. There is a small silver C suspended from a silver chain, sewn into the neckline. The C is me. All come with a by the C embroidered garment bag. I want everyone to feel like they have an extra special purchase. Our sizes are generous, and most customers take at least a size smaller than what they think. I always like to chat with my customers, so we can choose the fit best for them. They are meant to be roomy, like you are wearing your “boyfriend’s” jacket. Sizes are XXS-XL, fitting approximately a 0-22. Something for everybody and Every Body!
I am involved in every aspect of each blazer. Sometimes the NAME comes first, and I source special buttons and lining that will match the NAME. Other times, a gorgeous button or a fun lining comes first, and the NAME reveals itself. After all the lining and buttons are ordered, everything is shipped to the factory in Toronto. The factory begins the process with the cutting of the lining and the black crepe fabric. After this huge job is completed, the pieces that require embroidery are bundled up and shipped back to me. All pieces must be kept in proper order to keep the dye lot the same. Typically, this is 5 pieces per blazer and we must manufacture at least 100 blazers at a time (usually 150-200) - about 750-1000 pieces of cut out fabric is sent to me. I number and NAME each and every piece of fabric. The pieces to be embroidered are delivered to Wynter at RAD Casuals and this is where the magic happens. RAD has been involved since day one, working on designs for the backs, etc. I use local talent when available and RAD Casuals has been a perfect fit. The pieces are reorganized, bundled and sent back to the factory, where the final blazers are assembled (this includes sewing on the buttons and the silver Cs). Quality control is so important to me – this is my NAME and why I choose to be an integral part of the process. It is to make sure hockey sticks do not end up on the back of “Nip and Tux.” Surprisingly, we have never had a mishap! There are a lot of sleepless nights while we are in the factory, but as soon as they arrive, I am always beyond excited to see the new designs come to life. It is a labour of love!
Blazers with a personality…which one suits YOUR personality?
Since the inception of by the C, I decided to expand my inventory and include other merchandise to coordinate with the blazers. Purses, leggings, jeans, luxurious silk scarves and tops are all now part of the shopping experience at by the C. Our by the C brand has also expanded to include watches, candles, T-shirts and sneakers (with original artwork). I am passionate about helping other women designers and artisans get more exposure for their products. I am proud to showcase their unique designs in the store and on our website. We currently feature the whimsical artwork of Medicine Hat native, Kelly Schlenker – tea towels, cards and bookmarks, all wonderful gift items. Susan Renner, also from Medicine Hat, creates Sacks from Scraps, one-of-a-kind repurposed fabric makeup bags and tote bags. A size and design for all – such fun accessories! Red Deer artist, Darcy Edinga of Silk Concepts, hand paints silk scarves – so many vivid, beautiful colours! We now carry silk face masks by Darcy. Calgary-based artist, Moya Maxted designs watches especially to match our blazers. Also, Moya’s artistry is displayed on her beautiful silk scarves. Just arrived, creatively inspired sneakers by Moya and Me.
I pride myself on exceptional, personal service to all by the C customers. Whether in person, on the phone or on my website, you can expect that I will be involved with your purchase from start to finish.
Visit us at 626 3rd Street SE in beautiful downtown Medicine Hat or on my website, www.bythec.ca .
So, what’s in a NAME? Everything!
by the C, the C is ME.
Well done!! What a great story… You are an inspiration, Cindi!! ❤️
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