Arpana Rayamajhi

Arpana Rayamajhi is a New York City based artist who was born in 1987 in Kathmandu, Nepal. She  is a multi-media artist who focuses mainly on paintings, sculpture, music, and jewelry. A recent graduate of the Cooper Union School of Art, she is also the co-founder of DISPOSE, an online magazine collection of disposable photographs that narrates the day of an individual.

Her work is driven by her love for color. She explains, "Back home it is a symbol of celebration, has deep religious significance, and is an integral part of everyday life. Growing up in a Hindu society where women are banned from wearing color upon the death of their husband, especially shades of red, is something that has affected me since I was a child. After losing my father, my mother’s decision to wear red was criticized by many people, including women. I see the culture of stripping a woman from wearing color as a practice that is misogynistic and regressive. Color then seems to be a symbol of life, and in a way, not letting a woman wear color is telling her that her life, her identity, is completely linked to her husband’s and therefore, she has no identity for herself. I am a woman, and I will use color whenever I want."

Arpana is also the founder of ARPANAJEWELS where she sells individual one of a kind pieces she's hand-made from various materials from her home in Nepal as well as from her travels around the world. Harnessing the spirit of what it means to adorn ourselves, she creates pieces that function not only as ornamentation but also as armor. She finds inspiration in tribal cultures and views wearing colors and jewelry as something ancient, evocative of the spirit of humanity.  

Lucy Silverman

Born in Andover, Massachusetts, Lucy Silverman currently lives and works in New York. A graduate of the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, her design work merges fashion, technology, and communication. 

Off White is a collection inspired by passive postures, interior skewed by forced perspective, flat planes and common interior paint colors. It embodies the interior as a prison, the person as product - suffocating and sterile, monotonous and apathetic. The Ease Drop Pillow is a a wearable tech project  to accompany the collection Off White. When pressed, the pillow presents live audio from different locations. The act of ease dropping implies a desire for human connection, but is simultaneously disconnected and isolating, exemplifying the atmosphere of the collection. 

Awamaki

Awamaki Lab is the brand behind the non-profit organization, Awamaki, based in Seattle and Peru. It was founded in 2010 by Annie Millican with the goal of empowering women through design by bringing creators from around the world to work with women artisans and build a mutually beneficial exchange of ideas and skills. Designers have the opportunity to learn about weaving traditions and sustainable production while artisans learn to expand their ideas and increase their access to markets and income. Awamaki Lab began with three seamstresses, 39 weavers, and one designer. The idea was to use traditional weaving to create unique fashion-forward products to sell in Awamaki's local fair trade store in Ollantaytambo, Peru, and around the world. Awamaki Lab now works with six cooperatives of nearly 100 artisans specializing in hand-woven naturally dyed textiles, hand-spun alpaca yarns and felt, hand-knitting, and sewing. Awamaki Lab operates under fair trade principals to ensure that their artisans earn a living wage. They are committed to creating sustainable, independently-run cooperatives and using locally sourced, natural materials. Learn even more about Awamaki from our interview with their Creative Director, Krissa Henderson here

RR Lingerie by Rachel Rector

Rachel Rector's passion for lingerie design is anchored by the pursuit of play during a multi-faceted creative process. She designs well-fitting garments that lift a woman's confidence and encourage exploring lingerie as fashion. Learn more about the designer from the interview we did with her here!

This Woman's Work by Kendra Benson

This Woman's Work is a women's RTW line designed and made in the Bushwick section of Brooklyn by Kendra Benson. Kendra strives to create imaginative, multimedia dress for modern lifestyles through research-driven collections that honor both the narrative of her concept as well as the special materials chosen. Learn more from an interview with Kendra on our blog here