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Collina Strada Channels the East

New+York+based+designer%2C+Hillary+Taymour+of+Collina+Strada%2C+presented+her+Spring+2019+collection+at+New+York+Fashion+Week+%28Courtesy+of+Collina+Strada%29
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Collina Strada Channels the East

New York based designer, Hillary Taymour of Collina Strada, presented her Spring 2019 collection at New York Fashion Week (Courtesy of Collina Strada)

New York based designer, Hillary Taymour of Collina Strada, presented her Spring 2019 collection at New York Fashion Week (Courtesy of Collina Strada)

New York based designer, Hillary Taymour of Collina Strada, presented her Spring 2019 collection at New York Fashion Week (Courtesy of Collina Strada)

New York based designer, Hillary Taymour of Collina Strada, presented her Spring 2019 collection at New York Fashion Week (Courtesy of Collina Strada)


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By Isiah Magsino

Hillary Taymour is not, and has never been, afraid to touch upon the notion of well-being, diversity and inclusivity. Although her career resides in the fashion industry, Taymour understands fashion does not exist in a vacuum and is, unable to exclude itself from politics, social upheaval and environmental issues.

According to Collina Strada’s public relations team, the designers felt a need to find harmony within and spread mindfulness to others to heal a nation ridden with turmoil and heartbreak.

It is then no question as to why the lead designer of Collina Strada decided to offer this year’s guests a path to self-awareness and self-reflection through the presentation of her Spring/Summer 2019 collection.

In the midst of an excruciating heatwave plaguing New York City, Taymour presents a cool (in temperature) and liberating collection that draws from an ancient Tibetan practice in yoga called Sound Bath.

This season marks my fifth fashion week since. Even so, the Mercer Street venue was completely alien to me compared to my past experiences. Before the collection made its debut, the audience was faced with a large, all-white cloth serving as the “runway,”- detailed with a gong, song bowls and vases in the center. Instead of the traditional long rectangular catwalk most designers choose to display their collections, Taymour chose to reflect the message of her collection by resembling the traditional sound bath environment. Pier 59’s cold venue would have served as an injustice to this particular collection.

Fashion shows are meant to showcase clothes —that much is obvious. But reflecting back on the show’s experience, it was the opening act that truly left a lasting impression on me. Usually shows begin with loud, upbeat runway music, a model debuting the collection, and an equally upbeat and fierce catwalk. However, the Collina Strada Spring/Summer 2019 collection began with a total of seven young and diverse children parading the runway with small mallets in hand. As the kids paraded around the runway, they took a seat in front of the song bowls in the center and began playing soft chimes. The play on purity and fragility in the children strongly supports the show’s theme of healing and self-awareness.

Taymour’s use of sheer fabrics, fearlessness in nudity, and diverse range of age and ethnicities in her cast launched a powerful, unifying, and calm energy. I have witnessed shows that play on nudity in their collections that have been simply obnoxious. However, Taymour’s execution of sheer fabrics and nudity came off as liberating and surprisingly elegant. My description of the execution probably serves no justice, but Taymour successfully made subtle appearances pack powerful implications of freedom.

Overall, Collina Strada Spring/Summer 2019 left audiences under a blanket of tranquility. I understand it sounds a bit dramatic, but it seems the balancing act between the seven chakras and peace found in Tibetan Practice was successful.

New York based designer Hillary Taymour of Collina Strada presented her Spring 2019 collection at New York Fashion Week (Courtesy of Collina Strada)

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Collina Strada Channels the East