Photography by Corey Jermaine
Brittany is an educator, designer, and systems thinking enthusiast whose work centers on fashion design strategies for sustainability and social impact. Brittany teaches at Parsons in the School of Fashion and the School of Art and Design History and Theory. She recently served as facilitator for UNLEASH Innovation Lab and an international expert at the Youth Fashion Summit, two organizations that focus on creating solutions for the UN's Sustainable Development Goals.
Carmen Gama Khira Goins-Paxton
Carmen Gama - Renew Designer At Eileen Fisher
Carmen is a New York-based designer born and raised in Mexico. She attended Parsons The New School for Design in New York and graduated as a finalist for the “Designer of the Year” Award, Class of 2015. Upon graduation, Gama’s ‘Sustainable Urban Outerwear’ thesis earned her the inaugural EILEEN FISHER x CFDA Social Innovator fellowship. During her fellowship, Gama worked collaboratively to design a scalable and profitable manufacturing system for recycled EILEEN FISHER garments, which concluded with a “Remade in The USA” capsule collection that debuted in July 2016. Today, EILEEN FISHER Renew has taken back over a million garments and done over 10 million dollars in sales.
Gama has a true passion for solution-based design and technological innovation. Through this framework she is constantly challenging her design values by striving to design clothes with the potential to last a lifetime and utilizing processes that make the most of old garments to create new designs. Gama has been featured in numerous publications including Women’s Wear Daily, The Wall Street Journal, and Harper’s Bazaar.
Khira Goins-Paxton - Founder of Portion Magazine
Khira is a Brooklyn based editor and fashion producer. She grew up in a small town in Tennessee, graduated Cum Laude from Middle Tennessee University with a Bachelor of Science, and began her fashion career in garment production. After coming to terms with the more unethical aspects of the industry, she began researching, interviewing, and collaborating with individuals to discover the bounds of sustainable fashion and the growth needed therein. She is the founder of PORTION (previously AWEAR!) magazine, an annual print platform seeking to cast light on circular fashion and other aspects of the industry needing change. PORTION publishes research, interviews and editorials that focus exclusively on slow, ethical, or circular fashion brands and individuals.
Khira seeks to grow PORTION into a platform where readers can see current changes within the industry and reflect on their own personal choices. In her free time she enjoys environmental, social and fashion industry related research, as well as freelance fashion production.
Arianne Engelberg Jaadi Fonseca
Arianne Engelberg - Creative Director of The New Denim Project
Arianne is Creative Director and co-founder of The New Denim Project, the newest venture within Iris Textiles, an industrial textile group and family business operating in Guatemala since 1956. The project’s fundamental intent is to recreate textile manufacturing, and re-design industrial processes under a closed-loop system.
Our main approach to textile innovation in production is through the concept and design principle of upcycling. Collecting post industrial textile excess from denim factories as our main raw material - and grounding these scraps from cutting tables back into fiber, to spin again and create premium quality yarns and woven fabrics.
Our manufacturing process is chemical-free, dye-free and uses minimal water and energy. During our operation, we do not utilize any synthetic fibers, therefore our yarns and fabrics all remain 100% natural. Turning this excess waste into upcycled natural fiber textiles created within a circular economy, like the earth itself.
Jaadi Fonseca - BFA Fashion Design Student at Parsons School of Design
As a multidisciplinary student in fashion design and psychology at The New School, Jaadi believes that holistic approaches are most needed when it comes to finding the connection with the environment we inhabit. Her goal is to find creative, sustainable, and human-centered solutions for production and consumption systems.
In the past year, Jaadi's research has been in the intersection of design, psychology, and science. Even without much technical background, she was awarded a grant to visit Aalto University and the Ioncell project awarded by the H&M Global awards. She also participated in the latest UNLEASH Innovation Lab that gathers one thousand talents to find solutions for the UN Sustainable Development Goals where her team won Gold on the Sustainable Consumption and Production track.
As a multicultural and interdisciplinary student, Jaadi deeply believes that the outstanding potential of crossing various cultures, competences, and ways of thinking, is the best way to solve problems.
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Algodones Mayas was founded 26 years ago by Luisa's parents with a goal of preserving the Guatemalan culture, the land, it's natural colors and motifs. To do this they grow and cultivate native pre-hispanic colored cotton. The thread derived from their cotton does not go through any dyeing process. They preserve 100% of the plant's natural colors: brown Ixcaco, raw white and jade green.
Over the past seven years it's been such a gift to see how our little brand has grown and evolved. From launching a Kickstarter project back in 2012 to quitting my freelance gigs a few years later to work on Kordal full time and hiring our first team member Jia Yee, we've reached milestones I couldn't have imagined. I'm still pinching myself that on November 30th, 2019 we opened the doors of our very own store.