A Day in the Life: Denim Designer Molly Spittal Doesn’t Hate Social Media or Track Her Screen Time
"I think that people try too hard to separate their life and their social media. I'm not bothered by scrolling as much as I do."
Molly Spittal is one busy woman. Since 2013, she’s been the powerhouse designer and founder of The Stowe, a sparingly designed leather accessories brand, and also helps manage the Decade Building, an artsy Montreal warehouse that’s home to The Stowe as well as other homegrown designers like Eliza Faulkner and YUUN and hosts everything from pop-up shops to photoshoots to album release parties. And because apparently she’s not busy enough, Spittal just founded Decade Studio, a sumptuous denim brand that uses 100% organic cotton denim for jeans that break in softly over time. “The reason why I wanted to focus on denim was because I had a lot of really strong opinions about it,” she says. “It’s definitely my medium.” Decade Studio jeans are built for women with “renaissance proportions,” aka small waists and big hips; Spittal used her own body as a starting point to tailor the fit of the jeans.
If you got tired just reading that last paragraph, I don’t blame you. We caught up with Molly over the phone to figure out how she manages to make her very busy life work for her.
The first thing I do when I wake up is look at my phone. Our handbags are made in Spain, and our denim is made in Portugal, so I start communication with my factories and production managers over there immediately when I wake up. I make sure all my posts are ready to go for social, because I manage all of the social for my businesses. I definitely scroll Instagram just to get my juices flowing a little bit. I’m not one of those people that hate social media. I think that people try too hard to separate their life and their social media. I’m not bothered by scrolling as much as I do. I don’t count my screen time. It’s part of my job and I enjoy doing it. It’s inspiring, as long as you are following the right stuff.
I have a young miniature Chihuahua and she is the best thing ever. Her name is Pina, and she’s super small, so we just go for a short walk around the block. I’ve only had her since January, so I’m still kind of learning how to have a dog.
I tend to my garden every single morning. I’m very garden obsessed. I check on everything, and water all my flowers. It’s definitely my happy place.
Then I shower and ride my bike to work. I ride my bike everyday.
Arrive at work. [The Decade Building] is actually a repurposed loading dock, so I open up the big garage doors to let the light in, turn on the music, and get the coffee going for everybody.
My to-do list is endless. I’m learning from Matt, my long-term partner and business partner, who has “email hours.” He does two chunks in a day, so between 10am and 1p, he just answers emails, and then he doesn’t answer emails again until between 4pm and 5pm. I do a lot of customer service for the brands because as the designer, I’m most knowledgeable about the product, so I email with customers and answer DM’s for both The Stowe and Decade Studio.
Lunch is something that we normally all do together. (Editor’s note: Decade Studio is run by Molly, her partner Matt, and their friends Ezra and Morgan.) Matt and I cook at home a lot so we bring lunch. There’s also not a lot around the building. If anyone was to open a little sandwich spot in Outremont, they’d probably become a millionaire. That’s a good idea actually; maybe that’s our next project. We built a lunch table in the backyard and we hang out with the dogs and chitchat.
I kind of change gears in the afternoon. My creative brain starts flowing after 1:30pm or 2pm. That takes up the rest of my afternoon with emails here and there. We also get a lot of customers coming through our showroom to try on the jeans. They’re pretty steady, especially in the summertime. It’s really nice; the value of the face-to-face interaction with my customers and getting that direct feedback from them is immeasurable.
I try to cut my day off around 5:30pm. But because I work in a giant two-story garage sometimes my friends will roll up on their bikes after they’re leaving their office, and they will cruise by for a beer. It’s like heaven. I ride home with Pina, and she rides in my basket, which is pretty cute.
We make dinner most nights, or we sit in the park and I turn off pretty much right away. I have so much going on every day that I really need to take my evenings for myself. We love to sit in the park, and it’s so cliché, living in Montreal, but we eat a lot of baguettes and cheese, a little bit of wine in the park after work is just the perfect way to unwind.