Meet the Artists known as We Tight Knit
Whitney Washington and Ashley Padmore, the dope duo who makes up We Tight Knit,
has taken Memphis by storm in recent months with their custom chainstitch embroidery. Stock&Belle had the pleasure of hosting a We Tight Knit Pop-Up in December 2020 and we fell in love with these golden souls. We wanted to get a little more personal with Whitney and Ashley, so follow along to get up close and personal with We Tight Knit.
1. How did We Tight Knit get its start?
We Tight Knit started in 2020, at the beginning of the pandemic. Right before everything shut down, we had been discussing how it was going to take a big event to force us to launch our own brand, then boom! COVID hit and we were laid off from our jobs in NY. So through a blessing in disguise, WTK was born!
2. What is We Tight Knit? If you had only 5 words to describe We Tight Knit, what would they be?
WTK is vibrant, hand-cranked, customized chainstitch embroidery- made with love♥️
3. What prompted the move to Memphis?
Whitney is originally from Memphis, and Ashley, a native New Yorker was ready for something new. Once the pandemic hit, we decided we could use a change of scenery, and Memphis was somewhere familiar where we saw opportunity. It’s been a joy collaborating with different artists and stores since we’ve been here, and can’t wait to keep expanding our network.
4. Whitney, how does it feel to be back?
Whitney: Although I love NY, it feels great to be home! I see my hometown through a whole new lens now and it’s really a great time to be design entrepreneurs in Memphis.
Ashley, what do you think of Memphis?
Ashley: Memphis is amazing! I am loving the people, places and food despite the Covid-19 restrictions. The culture here is so welcoming and I am getting to know each neighborhood as Whitney helps me explore their unique vibes. My favorites are Cooper Young and Downtown. NYC and the 901 are very different places, so I’m excited to discover a new city!
5. What are your goals for We Tight Knit?
Our mission is to collaborate through customization, so our immediate goal is to connect and work with as many Memphis artists, brands and stores as possible. We enjoy doing pop-ups to bring personalization right to our clients- who are so amazing, btw! The bigger picture is to grow into a personalization brand that allows clients to upcycle their wardrobes, as well as home furnishings into amazing pieces of art they can pass down through generations.
6. Tell us a little about yourself, Whitney?
I’m always down for a good adventure, I enjoy cooking with Ash, and I am a lifelong Buddhist practitioner. Ha! Didn’t expect that huh? But yes! I chant “Nam Myoho Renge Kyo” everyday to get in rhythm with the Universe and make causes that create the best effects.I also love to sing, and make up songs about any and everything lol.
Growing up in NYC I was lucky to be exposed to so many cultures and people, so my first love became traveling. I have visited many places from Seoul to Buenas Aires and I enjoy immersing myself in all the different languages, music, history and of course fashions. I also love cats (lol) and am practicing roller skating whenever I can!
7. What music are you listening to right now?
Whitney: Anything with a catchy melody that has soul. Dramatic like Jazmine Sullivan, but also fun like Chloe x Halle. I need the car next to me to really feeel it when they catch me singing along lol!
Ashley: I'm always listening to anything upbeat I can sew and dance to... even if it's a little one-two step. My favorites have to be classic salsa, reggae, trap, funk and disco. My favorite song to jam to right now is Franchise by Travis Scott and MIA.
8. What's your favorite Memphis restaurant? And Why? What's your order?
Whitney: tbh there are too many to name! So I’ll just say Mean Jean’s Kitchen. It’s not a restaurant (yet), Mean Jean is actually my mom, and her food is *chef’s kiss* Her greens, cornbread, and smoked turkey are to die for. She also makes bomb pickles, salsa and these spicy crackers called firecrackers. If you know you know! Ok, I’m hungry.
Ashley: My favorite spot in Memphis to grab a quick bite is Broadway Pizza on Broad Ave, not for their pizza but for their fried green tomatoes with ranch. We don't have that dish up north and now I am addicted! They are best when you eat them right away and with with a “Junt” beer.
9. You both are so fashionable, can you describe your styles and style inspirations? Style icons?
Whitney: My style is funky and relaxed. Jumpsuits forever! Hats make any outfit pop, throw on some gold hoops and a little Aquaphor for a subtle moisturized glow?! I mean, wow, who is she?! My style icons are Andre 3000 everyday, and Teyana Taylor when I’m feelin’ sexy.
Ashley: Thank you!! I usually try to dress for warmth and function. My favorite looks are full on denim, oversized and cropped or anything that has a unique silhouette to it. I think my style inspirations come from everyday life and the people I see and come across. The patternmaker in me is subconsciously always looking for the perfect fit, and what I would do to put my spin on a garment. My style icon : Sonjia Williams.
10. What impact are you hoping to make on Memphis?
Whitney: I want to help put the Memphis art scene on the map. Sometimes I feel like we are seen as the underdog, and people might not expect us to have as much SAUCE as we do. But one thing is for certain, wherever Memphians grind, we shine.
Ashley: I want people in Memphis and all over to think about their wardrobes in a more collaborative and sustainable way. Everything from the cotton that was grown, spun, dyed and then made into an actual piece of fabric to buying that great jacket on a deep discount takes its toll on the planet. Why not take pride in every piece you own by customizing it to the fullest and passing it down as works of art.
We told you they were dope! Now it is time to browse your wardrobes and choose which pieces need a little We Tight Knit love. We Tight Knit offers custom embroidery, patches, pins, stickers and hair clips. You can commission We Tight Knit for custom embroidery by visiting their website www.wetightknit.com or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. Also, be sure to follow them on instagram @wetightknit.