Community and Our Planet. Collina Strada SS20

Hillary Taymour’s brand, Collina Strada, is another line-up from NYFW that will make you smile. This label is all about sustainability, but not in a shallow, ‘trendy’ way: each season, it focuses on community, a balanced life and our planet. The invitation listed a number of points that would help Mother Earth: eat less meat, start a garden, grow your own food, learn to compost, buy vintage and plant many trees were just some. The runway was staged on a street, along stalls of home-grown vegetables and fruits, free for pick-up (and perfect for a in-between-the-shows brunch). The models weren’t actual models, but friends of the brand, at different ages, sizes and races. They walked along their babies and pets. This was a raw and truly “real” fashion show. And the fashion was equally laid-back: it had the signature Collina Strada D.I.Y. feeling about it, full of tie-dye and garments made out of upcycled textiles and fabrics. I love New York’s small, independent brands.

Collage by Edward Kanarecki.

Sustainable Reality. Collina Strada AW19

It’s the first time I’m writing about Hillary Taymour’s brand, Collina Strada. And I guess it’s not the last time you will hear about this New York-based brand here. I was tempted to browse through her show, when I saw one of her models carry a baby on shoulders in a very bold, yellow floral turtleneck styled with watercolour pants on Man Repeller’s Instagram stories. But that’s just a glimpse of Taymour’s joyous, tie-dyed, reality-imitating theme for autumn-winter 2019. The show started off  with a “mini TED Talk,” as Hillary referred to it, given by environmental activist and hip-hop artist Xiuhtezcatl Martinez. He spoke at length about protecting life and Mother Earth while models (and the baby!) came down the runway. Collina Strada’s designer used 75 percent deadstock fabric made into trousers and tops in psychedelic hand-painted prints and a daisy motif. In addition to those reused materials, Taymour also partnered with 4ocean to utilize beads the organization makes with recycled waste. These were used in straps of the dresses. What else suggested Collina Strada’s pursuit for sustainability? Making eco-ware cool. Refillable cups, lunch boxes and thermoses replaced totes and clutches. Yes!

Collage by Edward Kanarecki.