portland fashion week: amelia toro
(images via pfw)
i’m going to be rather forthright and say that while i like portland as a city and have seen some very good fashion during my times passing through, i was none too impressed with the s/s 2011 fashion week as a whole. yes, this is based on opinion alone, but, unfortunately, some of the smaller cities in the united states haven’t fared well in the face of new york: instead, anyone wishing to make something of him(her)self goes to that city to present.
however, colombian designer amelia toro's s/s 2011 work would have been good in any city, under any light. her beautiful ethnic-embellished dresses had an old world pull, referencing a heritage many of us are unfamiliar with, but the pieces were grounded in modernity with cuts sexy and appealing for the contemporary lady.
inspired by the kuna indians, the ibt noted that they, “have created a cotton based technique called the ‘mola’ which involves hand-sewn quilting and layering of fabric. Vital elements surrounding the Kuna Indians are represented in the mola using motifs such as animals and geometric figures. Toro made use of this concept in her new collection by integrating the molas with natural fiber fabrics like wool, silk and crepé.”
of the collection, the designer commented, “My main purpose in designing this collection is to help a cultural heritage continue its elaboration through finding new applications which give a future to a technique passed down through generations.”
in a later interview, she also stated, “I am interested in the universal quality of their work. The Kuna Indians are based in Panama as well as in Costa Rica but a lot of their geometric shapes are found in many other indigenous groups around the world such as many of the American Indians who use graphic shapes. Culture is important, so are roots. What I tried to do with this type of work is to show how small the world is and how universal these graphic shapes and patterns are.”
(some additional lovely detail shots may be seen here)