Sep 28, 2014

Shawl Wallah's Ethically-Produced Shawls

Shawl Wallah, a new organization working with local artisans out of Kashmir, India, is launching a Kickstarter campaign to fund its line of ethically-produced, handmade Pashmina shawls.

"The various families involved employ centuries-old techniques in gathering, spinning, dyeing, and weaving the fine Pashmina wool," says Greg Doudican, Founder of Shawl Wallah, "Making each shawl a true work of art.”



The Kickstarter campaign, titled “Ethically Produced Pashmina Shawls” (Link to be provided once campaign launches), will start September 3 – October 2, 2014. The goal is to raise $25,000 for its Spring/Summer 2015 line.

"There’s been a lot of heart and soul put into Shawl Wallah since its inception in November 2013, but now we’re turning to the Internet to help take it to the next level," Doudican said, "We will offer superior quality products that people will love, while building social and economic stability in Kashmir.”


Shawl Wallah came to fruition by accident. Working as a UN Refugee Consultant in New Delhi, Doudican found himself in Kashmir, a region located in Northern India that has endured decades of conflict, resulting in economic and social devastation. Doudican learned about the traditional Kashmiri textile industry, and its decline due to external pressures. "We have an ancient industry, still producing the original Pashmina shawls, famous the world over," Doudican explains. “Now due to mass-produced foreign imports, this dying art form is often duplicated yet never replicated in quality and beauty.”

From this, Doudican developed Shawl Wallah as a true social enterprise. They’re committed to sourcing ethically-produced products, which keeps craftsmen and craftswomen employed, and simultaneously preserves the art of hand-weaving.  This strategic framework will, in turn, help promote sustainable economic growth to the region.

 

Shawl Wallah is also committed to investing in the region's most valuable resource – children. With each product sold, Shawl Wallah donates 20% of the sale price to Save the Children India, which provides child protection and education services in Kashmir.

"There are not many brands employing this type of business model in the fashion industry, and none doing so with Pashmina (or cashmere) shawls," Doudican said. "With Shawl Wallah, we hope to raise the bar on international trade, and become a model in conscious and responsible consumerism."

To learn more about Shawl Wallah or show your support visit their Kickstarter page here.


Sep 24, 2014

The Last Great Decade

The 90's have taken over my wardrobe. Well, maybe it's more like the 90's never left my wardrobe. I feel like this great decade can take a lot of the credit for shaping me into the fucking weirdo that I am today. We're 15 years down the road and I'm still sporting tattoo chokers, an eyeball ring, deep purple nail polish, a disposable camera, and Jawbreaker quotes - If that's not proof...

"We are the weirdos, mister." - The Craft

"So I change, rearrange. See, it's called demented. No, seriously, the color's called demented." - Jawbreaker

"Why ya'll gotta waste my flavor? Damn!" - Can't Hardly Wait

"Rollin' with the homies." - Clueless

"I just get really happy when they finally let her shop." - Romy and Michele's High School Reunion


Learn it. Live it. Love it.

xx
Vylette  Dalton

Sep 23, 2014

Katty Xiomara Spring/Summer 2015

Award-winning designer, Katty Xiomara presented Spring/Summer 2015 collection at Nolcha Fashion Week: New York, and unveiled the OtterBox Dress.
by Joshua Griffin



New York Fashion Week may be over but our minds are still processing all the beauty that was brought to life for the Spring/Summer 2015 season; and the people over at The Wearhouse District are still in awe over designer Katty Xiomara, who showed at Nolcha Fashion Week - a leading award winning event for independent fashion designers to showcase their collections to a global audience of press, retailers, stylists and industry influencers.



Xiomara, a Portuguese designer, is notably known for her geometric patterns. But she’s traded in her protractor for a toque. As she transforms into a “chocolatier” for this season’s collection by melting geometric shapes into more organic forms. She’s brought an almost futuristic design to urban women. Staying true to the 70’s theme that we saw across many runways, Xiomara doesn’t disappoint in her own romantic and ironic way while still keeping a feminine overtone to all her designs.


The Otter-Box Dress
Kat Graham and Xiomara
Wrapping up her show was the Otter-Box Dress; which was designed around and inspired by Alpha Glass screen protectors that Otter Box uses on their products. Sitting front row wearing Xiomara were actresses Kat Graham, Sammi Hanretty, and Kristen Ruhlin who all got a close look at what it means to be a true craftswomen in the 21st century.

Aug 31, 2014

Designer to Watch: Sengco Apparel

Zach Seng, founder of Sengco Apparel and Pennsylvania native, created a design that makes a boring pocket tee into a unique fashion statement. 

Hand-picking endless amounts of fabric, all ranging in different style and material, Seng applies each as a pocket to tees, tanks and cardigans - creating an outstanding piece of fashion. The concept is simple, the process in thoughtful, and the product is stylish.


Seng is an artist, music buff, and regular reveler. "I never thought I would be a fashion designer/founder of a clothing line. Not that I was against the idea, it just hadn't crossed my mind," said Seng. But, once the shirts caught on that all changed.



photographer, Alexandra Amarotico

Seng first got the idea for the Sengco Apparel concept in high school. He wanted to continue the convenience, comfort, and utility of a standard tee, but add a much needed touch of interest to an otherwise boring plain shirt. It wasn't until he received his grandmother's sewing machine that he began putting the idea into action. Almost two years ago, Seng created the first Sengco Apparel tee, in the corner of his dad's basement. He sported his new shirt with pride for several days, and received bucketloads of compliments and requests. Before he knew it, all his friends had to have their own - and some even had to have several.

That's when Seng realized his DIY project had potential, and sought out outlets to share his designs. His friends had introduced him to some of the New York City flea markets and proposed that they may be a good environment for Sengco Apparel to catch on. A year later, Sengco Apparel has become Zach Seng's full time job - as he frequents the city's flea markets to sell his designs.


photographer, Alexandra Amarotico

Seng enjoys the idea of a small and creative DIY business. He keeps the Sengco Apparel team small. They help with handling fabrics, preparing pockets, and embroidery logos and cards. Seng sews all the pockets himself. He also selects each pocket fabric, and often develops his on prints. He's used tweeds, canvases, linens, silks, ikats, printed cottons, burlaps, and more. During this process, his focus is to have the pockets stand out visually and texturally. Overall, Sengco Apparel's main goal is to create an honest product that looks, wears and feels better than the rest!


photographer, Alexandra Amarotico

Recently Zach Seng teamed up with Breanne, fashion blogger and cake connoisseur of ByBreanne.com, for a special collaboration where Breanne creates a cake based on one of Seng's designs. Check it out at www.bybreanne.com/sengco.

Seng is also working on a large scale drawing exhibit in Chelsea, Manhattan by late 2014, or early 2015. He will also be going on a four month road trip from the east coast to California, to Mexico, throughout Central America, and back. He hopes to share Sengco shirts with all the happy people he meet along the way.

Visit SengcoApparel.com to shop current styles or even customize your own! If you are in the New York City area, you can find Sengco Apparel at various flea markets - Mainly the Hell's Kitchen Flea Market on Saturday's and Sunday's.