Behind the Front Row: Designer Runa Ray Shares What It Means To Create A Sustainable Collection


By: Emilie Moy

Although fashion month is still going strong in Europe, we are experiencing some post fashion week blues in New York, as we think back on the beautiful collections that we witnessed this season. Designers strived to test new waters and stretch their creativity this year, and Runa Ray's sustainable collection was no exception. Her SS 18 collection was made up of various natural resources including leaves and rose petals, with even the show's invitations being made out of re-plantable paper. 

"The collection was based on a lot of prints that were not digitally done, but were organically done. So you actually see the leaves that were taken from the trees and pressed by rollers so it gets like this fossilized effect. The trees and the rose petals-- everything you can press into the garment and it kind of imparts the color to it, so it's basically what I call chlorofil printing," Ray said. 

Using live, natural resources in her design process automatically made the clothes come to life. She claims that her inspiration comes from not one thing, and she mentions that the collection has a "Romanist feel" to it and reflects the easiness of the summer while incorporating its seasonal flowers. In addition to using plants, Ray says, "I've been using a lot of handlooms which are organically dyed using indigos and the linings of different aloe so it kind of imparts this medicinal feel."

Though Ray may be one of the few designers who brought together fashion and the environment, her favorite part about NYFW is one that most designers agree with. She says, "I love the vibe. I love the fact that you work so hard for months, and then you come and it just culminates into this beautiful thing you're working with professionals, people who know what they're doing, and the teamwork is awesome."


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