BEYOND FASHION – THIS DESIGNER SENDS A POWERFUL MESSAGE
Caption: Designer Hilary Taymour of Collina Strada with models on stage during her presentation titled ‘It Matters.’
When you exit a Collina Strada New York show, you cannot help but basking in a ‘feel good’ vibe. Not only does HILARY TAYMOUR, designer and creator of the Collina Strada line create her clothes with sustainability in mind, but, they are hand sewn with eco-friendly material. On top of that, she brings awareness to social issues by making bold statements with her presentations. For this season she used a cast of all Black models. Last season with all the talk about gender equality, Hilary placed what was ‘supposed’ to be female clothes on all male models.
ALL BLACK CAST
This season’s show was in the form of a stark presentation at the trendy Chelsea Studios – Pier 59 on Manhattan’s west side. A stellar cabine’ of fabulous Black models stood stoic, as they brought her spring/summer original creations to life. In natural layers, white was the predominant color with hints of moss green and mauve peeking out of the ensemblage’. Loose tunics, El Morra ruffled tanks and dresses, spiced with striped denim separates, made up the bulk of this unique collection.
Collina Strada New York was clearly one of the most stunning showcases of the season. For a relatively new designer coming into her own, this was a significant step in her fast rising career. On why she choose the theme ‘It Matters,’ for her show, Hilary said: “It’s our duty to acknowledge this, particularly at this time when African-Americans are taking to the streets to remind us that their lives matter….We need to amplify those voices and use our collective influence to push for change.” Hilary continued; “We are in a crucial state of change right now and the more we do, the more we can impact others to take action.”
This designer is known for her genderless outlook of fashion, not limiting her creations to be worn by one specific gender or race. As mentioned, last season she created a buzz by showing everything on an all male cast of models. Hilary also create clothes that seamlessly translate from season to season. Noting that she believes inspiration is best found off the beaten path, her creations are a true combination of vintage and modern, resulting in an aesthetic of timely elegance, swathed in pure originality.
Collina Strada was launched in 2008 in Los Angeles. Hilary started with a handbag collection while she was still in college. As a student at FIDM (Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising) where she got her Associates degree in Product Development and her Bachelors degree in Business Management, Hilary recalled making over 300 handbags in her appartment, staying up until 2:00am to complete her work. She was a student, making the handbags that started her company – Collina Strada, while working at Guess in Southern California, where she grew up.
By Walter Greene