This season Studio One Eighty Nine, the fashion brand co-founded by actress Rosario Dawson and luxury executive Abrima Erwiah, presented their Spring Summer 2020 womenswear and menswear collection during New York Fashion Week in New York City at Spring Studios. The collection, entitled Heritage, was inspired by traditional African patterns, symbols, and techniques interwoven into the cloth to communicate values, history, and message to future generations.
The brand was initially launched in February of 2013 and is the recipient of various awards including the Martin Luther King Jr Social Justice award from Upenn in 2015, the MOCADA Social Justice award in 2016, the Design Miami Visionary award in 2017, the Filming On Italy Social Justice award in 2018, and was the 2018 recipient of the prestigious CFDA Lexus Fashion Award for sustainability. Studio One Eighty Nine is made in Africa and produces African and African-inspired content and clothing. The brand currently operates a store in New York and Accra (Ghana), an e-commerce site, a manufacturing facility in Accra, and supports various community-led projects in Africa and in the USA Studio.
The New York Fashion Week runway show that took place on September 10, 2019, which included a cultural experience with live dance and musical performances that were inspired by the continent of Africa. The collection was a mix of vibrant hues and pastels with red, indigo, white, green, with pops of yellow and black dominating the color palette. The colors of the collection were reflective of the colors found in the American and Ghanaian flag as well as colors found in nature.
The Spring 2020 collection was designed with sustainability and building products meant to last in mind by the use of zero-waste materials, recycled materials, and patchworking. Patchworking was used as a way of communicating stories by patching different symbols and textiles together reminiscent of quilting. Another example, is the use of traditional West African Adinkra symbols stamped on Kente cloth. Each symbol, pattern, and color tell distinct stories that highlight cultural values such as the power of collaboration or the power of women.
Among the 600 guests including media, buyers, celebrities and VIPs gathered at Spring Studios, guests seated front row included Fantasia, Naturi Naughton, Maggie Q, Young Paris, Opal Tometti, Bethann Hardison, Justine Skye, Joani Johnson, Quincy Brown, Shaun Ross, Laura Gomez, and Jeremy Carver just to name a few.
“We celebrate all of the characteristics that make us different and also all our similarities through mixing prints and patterns and by encouraging the uniqueness of all the people that wear the brand,” Erwiah says. “The brand should be a source of strength for customers and help them achieve their best selves, but in the end the clothes are meant as a backdrop to highlight the beauty of each individual. “
The collection will be available for purchase at studiooneeightynine.com, in Studio One Eighty Nine retail stores, and in select retail stores starting in February 2020.
To learn more visit studiooneeightynine.com