Subtle Poison is a female owned brand born out of a creative desire to enable independent adventure fun seekers the freedom to express themselves through unique bold and colourful fashion pieces. Founder, Grainne Binns a well-travelled Gen z/millennial, shared that Subtle Poison ironically evolved from COVID explaining that it was the first COVID lockdown that awoken a new sense of freedom and appreciation of the beauty that lay on her own doorstep and further afield in her beautiful country, Ireland. Before COVID Grainne was convinced that like many other creatives before her she would have to leave Ireland to realise her dreams. Whilst she found the initial enforced lockdown suffocating, she gradually adapted to a slower pace of life and started embracing the beauty that was in her 5-k restricted perimeter. With lots of additional time on her hands, she got back into skating and sea swimming, hobbies from her earlier years, and started surfing, whilst also focusing on her mental wellbeing through the practice of yoga and meditation.
As she got more into her hobbies, she realized that her aesthetic style wardrobe did not align with her new lifestyle, the majority of which was not practical for these new activities. Trying to fill her wardrobe with pieces that were practical for skating or other hobbies without compromising her personal style, which she describes as colorful and fun, was a huge challenge. In addition, with Surfing and Skating (particularly Skateboarding) being quite male dominated, she found that the clothing in the market for these sports didn’t quite have the feminine touch that she liked. It was then she realised that there was a gap in the market, and with her newfound extra time and disposal income she set about addressing that gap and out of that Subtle Poison was born.
The brand caters for the practical side of her hobbies whilst incorporating her pre-pandemic love of festivals, clubbing and a good day out with friends. Its hallmark is colorful and fun prints designed to not only make the wearer look good but also to make them feel their absolute best. ‘I love the idea of creating these relatively rebellious sports styles in super bright and feminine clothing -that in itself feels liberating’ Grainne enthuses.
Like many gen z / millennials, Grainne is aware of the detrimental effect that fast fashion can have on our planet. With that in mind, sustainability is top of mind and factored into every stage of the creation process from inception to final delivery of goods to customers. ‘Being so emersed in nature and the elements in my everyday life coupled with living in a coastal town means I get to see the devastating effect of climate change firsthand, so it would be ignorant of me to run a business that does not counteract the negative effect fashion has on the environment.’
She also goes on to say her mission is to further liberate people through the wearing of her bright, colorful and feminine clothing whilst complementing their wide range of activities.