Tired of having to tailor her chef jackets, Chef Hannah Staddon created Funky Chef, which makes jackets designed for women. She has now redesigned the jacket to be lighter weight and more flexible with more color options.
To help get Funky Chef started, Staddon organized a Galley Girl Weekend in 2022 to kickstart crowdfunding, but she quickly realized this approach didn’t align with the fashion industry. With a revised business model, Funky Chef has three distinct prints available now — two vibrant ones (Pink Panther and Tropical Tiger) and a classic black and white option (The Wild Side).
“Our jackets are not just fashion statements; they’re designed to enhance the chefs’ lifestyle,” she says. “Whether it’s the convenience of the pocket placements or the shortened length and tailored waist, our collection adds tangible value to the lives of female chefs who will no longer have to go through the inconvenience and lengthy process of getting their jackets tailored.”
Based on feedback, the jackets were overly warm and rigid and lacked pockets. The new pieces use a lighter-weight organic cotton infused with spandex for increased stretch factor and overall comfort, plus each jacket now has a hip and shoulder pocket. There are elements of the previous design that were kept, including the tailored waist, ties at the back for waist cinching, zip closure, and rounded front, back, and side seam splits. These contribute to a more flattering aesthetic and enhance maneuverability.
“In an era where clothing is more than just fabric, our jackets reflect the ever-evolving cultural landscape,” she says. “They capture the spirit of adventure, individuality, and the desire to stand out in the crowd.”
Staddon has also collaborated with Chef Tzarina Mace-Ralph, who has appeared on Below Deck Down Under, to provide some insight and creative input. Mace-Ralph admitted her tendency to be messy while cooking, which leads her to favor black attire. This swayed Staddon to adhere to the principle of “catering to what people desire and feel at ease in.”
While upholding the same fit and design, Funky Chef is actively striving to adapt to its customers’ preferences, so Staddon decided to introduce solid colors for chefs who may prefer or be required to wear a more traditional and subdued style.
Funky Chef will donate a portion of each jacket’s proceeds to the Endometriosis Foundation of America to help research efforts. “Personally contending with Stage 4 Endometriosis, I find solace in connecting with fellow women who share similar struggles,” she says. “It serves as a validation that my experiences are real and shared by others, reinforcing the importance of this cause.”
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