'E ko logic: "green" clothing from Troy

Ekologic shirts.jpg

Racks full of great shirts that used to be other stuff

By Jessica Pasko

Old sweaters and t-shirts become one-of-a-kind high-fashion items at Ekologic in Troy.

The company's been making their green-friendly sweaters, mittens and more since before "green" was trendy and they're definitely worth checking out.

Ask Brad Pitt and Catherine Keener. They're among the celebs who have been spotted wearing 'e ko logic designs.

Ekologic sweaters.jpgSince its inception, 'e ko logic has made about 30,000 pieces and re-used about 7 tons of "post consumer" fabric waste.

Kathleen Tesnakis started playing around with used clothing back in 1996 when she and her husband Charles were living in Portland, Oregon. She'd been working in the textile industry when she got the idea to take the used articles and create entirely new pieces.

"I really like the concept of re-consuming what is consumed," says Kathleen. "My company, and my lifestyle are all about making conscious choices.

Using discarded sweaters, shirts and other textile pieces from distributors in the New York City area, Ekologic hand sews and stitches every piece, about 4,000 a year to be exact. Those pieces are sold in stores around the country, through the company's online business and at various high-end crafts markets, including the upcoming "Jingle at the Chelsea Market" in Manhattan.

Ekologic bags.jpg

Charles and Kathleen, both native New Yorkers, re-located to Troy in 2003 to set up shop in the former Marvin Neitzel Corporation factory (the last place in the Collar City to produce collars.) She and Charles run the company by themselves, with help from their current assistant.

Ekolgic dress 1.jpg
She says she likes the culture that's percolating in Troy - it might not have the same services and products that Portland has, but she feels there are similar sentiments here when it comes to green living and sustainability.

'E ko logic has gotten a pretty big reputation in the past few years. Brad Pitt and Catherine Keener are just a few of the celebs spotted wearing their accessories. Sonic Youth's Lee Rinaldo apparently has a design named after him wore and 'e ko logic sweater in some recent promo photos. Tesnakis' sweaters and dresses have also been featured in many magazines and Web sites.

Considering that each piece is hand-cut and hand stitched, as you might imagine, they don't come cheap. A colorful cashmere hat costs around $72 while a sweater or a dress could run you $200 or $300. For a lot of us, it's probably a splurge but they're high-quality, one-of-a-kind items that are definitely swoon-worthy. Maybe it's time to re-write your Christmas wish list?

Ekologic dress 2.jpg

If you want to check out their stuff in person, the Ekologic studio will be open to the public from noon to 5 p.m. Sunday in conjunction with the Victorian Stroll. They'll be selling their products of course, but it's also worth just checking out because Kathleen and the studio have a fun, happy energy that just kind of makes you feel good to be there.

Find It

444 River St., 2nd floor
Troy, NY 12180

(518) 274-0813


People should shovel money at e ko logic on a regular basis - great clothes made by seriously two of the nicest folks I can think of. Big ups to Charlie + Kathleen - glad to have 'em here in Troy.

Say Something!

We'd really like you to take part in the conversation here at All Over Albany. But we do have a few rules here. Don't worry, they're easy. The first: be kind. The second: treat everyone else with the same respect you'd like to see in return. Cool? Great, post away. Comments are moderated so it might take a little while for your comment to show up. Thanks for being patient.

What's All Over Albany?

All Over Albany is for interested and interesting people in New York's Capital Region. In other words, it's for you. It's kind of like having a smart, savvy friend who can help you find out what's up. Oh, and our friends call us AOA.


Recently on All Over Albany

Thank you!

When we started AOA a decade ago we had no idea what was going to happen. And it turned out better than we could have... (more)

Let's stay in touch

This all feels like the last day of camp or something. And we're going to miss you all so much. But we'd like to stay... (more)

A few things I think about this place

Working on AOA over the past decade has been a life-changing experience for me and it's shaped the way I think about so many things.... (more)

Albany tightened its rules for shoveling snowy sidewalks last winter -- so how'd that work out?

If winter ever gets its act together and drops more snow on us, there will be sidewalks to shovel. And shortly after that, Albany will... (more)

Tea with Jack McEneny

Last week we were fortunate enough to spend a few minutes with Jack McEneny -- former state Assemblyman, unofficial Albany historian, and genuinely nice guy.... (more)

Recent Comments

My three year old son absolutely loving riding the train around Huck Finn's (Hoffman's) Playland this summer.

Thank you!

...has 27 comments, most recently from Ashley

Let's stay in touch

...has 4 comments, most recently from mg

A look inside 2 Judson Street

...has 3 comments, most recently from Diane (Agans) Boyle

Everything changes: Alicia Lea

...has 2 comments, most recently from Chaz Boyark

A few things I think about this place

...has 13 comments, most recently from Katherine