The new Tilit collection of colorful, unisex workwear is my daily uniform.

By Oset Babür
September 17, 2020
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Credit: Wini Lao

My love affair with Tilit started the first time I donned one of their jumpsuits––the one crafted in partnership with pasta maven Missy Robbins, to be exact. This simple black piece makes me feel like I could do anything. I’ve spent eight hours stranded on an Amtrak while wearing it, paired it with some statement earrings for last-minute plans (remember those?), and even wore it to host a dinner party. 

A favorite among hospitality professionals, Tilit walks the line between utilitarian and chic with their chef’s coats, aprons, and work pants. Unsurprisingly, their newest collaboration with chef and wellness advocate Sophia Roe follows that same thread.

The new collection includes four sets of unisex work jackets and pants in colors like jade, an eye-catching teal, and rust, a reddish shade well-suited for both leaf-peeping and apple pie baking.

“I am deeply inspired by the process of aizome, or indigo dying,” Roe told Food & Wine. “I was not able to connect with my grandmother until later in life, and to see her wearing the most beautiful aizome cotton and silk clothing was really inspiring.”

Everything Roe’s grandmother wore also served as workwear, and Roe recalls that the fabrics had an “amazing medium weight” and were perfectly tailored. “Japan has an undeniable culture of craftsmanship, and part of my own aesthetic is in honor of her,” she said. 

While the collection was initially meant to launch in April, Tilit’s factories pivoted to mask production with the onset of the pandemic, meaning many launches, including this one, were put on pause. But the increasingly blurred lines between work and home and the way many of us––myself included––are attempting to create routine, like by adopting a daily uniform, have given the collection even more meaning.

“For some reason, it all feels like it was meant to be a fall 2020 launch after all," said Tilit cofounder, Jenny Goodman. "The daily uniform and need for a bright spot with the punchy colors feels ripe for this moment.”

Notably, 10% of net sales from the collection will be donated to Edible Schoolyard, a decision the Tilit team and Roe felt strongly about given the current state of the world.

“Chefs are continually adapting to alternative roles and stages outside of the kitchen as well as inside," said Goodman. "We felt Sophia was a great example of that new style of chef, so when [she] and her team got in touch last year about working on a collection, it was a natural fit."