New York-based label Collina Strada offers a club-ready aesthetic | Fashion

New York-based brand Collina Strada takes sustainability seriously – its website describes it as “a platform for social issues and awareness” rather than a fashion label – but it’s loved by a younger demographic because it also brings pleasure. Her contribution to New York Fashion Week on Wednesday was no exception.

Rather than a show, a film titled The Collinas debuted at the Angelika Cinema. A spoof of a reality TV show documenting an unhappy intern, Tommy, joining the Collina Strada crew, he sent the dogmatism associated with sustainability with the recognizable roll-eyes, vocal fries and side-eyes to TV viewers. shows such as Keeping Up With the Kardashians and The Hills.

Pieces are produced in small batches in New York, and more durable fabrics are preferred. Photography: Soraya Zaman

The use of a disposable cup is greeted with an overwhelming “ew” while Tommy’s pastrami sandwich is a thing of horror for the other staff who eat raw carrots and broccoli. “I haven’t seen a dead animal since 2013,” said one.

This film comes as a surprise for a brand so known for its sustainability best practices, but the irony is perhaps a reaction to the brand’s rise to prominence – and fashion’s growing commitment to sustainability. – during the last years. Hillary Taymour founded Collina Strada, while a fashion student, in 2009 – a year when terms such as ‘sustainability’ or ‘dead stock’ would have led to a brand being labeled a niche rather than a trendsetter. industry.

Collina Strada is now very close to the latter: it is produced in small batches in New York, favors more sustainable fabrics and has a partnership with a non-profit organization based in Ghana, called OR Foundation, to reuse materials.

Basically, Collina Strada’s apparel is carefully crafted, but it also has a Y2K, club-ready aesthetic that appeals to Gen Z. the brand. The audience at the Angelika mirrored the style of those in the film, suggesting that the guests were also friends of the brand. Many, including Taymour, wore the tie-dye, oversized, arty garments the brand is known for.

A bikini type affair with a band and a ruffled skirt
A model in New York shows off one of her colourful, cut designs, more is more. Photography: Soraya Zaman

Casting for shows and movies has also been ahead of the game. Models are always varied: by age, height, ethnicity, gender, and physical ability. The 70-year-old mother of her collaborator, Charlie Engman, is a favorite muse, as is Aaron Philip, the black, transgender and disabled model. Both appeared in The Collinas alongside models Cory Kennedy and Jazzelle Zanaughtti, executive editorial director of Dazed & Confused Lynette Nylander and – to get this really meta – actual reality TV star Whitney Port, who is made a name on The Hills.

Broader fashion is finally catching up with Taymour. Nominated for a CDFA award in 2019, she was selected by Gucci designer Alessandro Michele to be part of the 2021 digital festival, GucciFest, and has collaborated with Levi’s and Reebok. Celebrities such as Rihanna, Rosalia, Charlie XCX and Camilla Mendes have worn her clothes. Speaking to the Financial Times this month, she described what drives her. “My goal with Collina is to teach people and have fun,” she says. “We’re just trying to make fashion a little less awful.”

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