Photograph Courtesy of Collectiva
As a destination for discovery, Bergdorf Goodman is proud to announce the second season of BG RADAR, our curation of the latest and greatest collections from emerging designers across the globe, including bassike, Cecilie Bahnsen, Collectiva, Gauge81, Kika Vargas, Materiel, Nodaleto, Petar Petrov and Peter Do.
In an effort to get to know the talented individuals behind these brands, we sat down with each of them ahead of the second season’s launch to learn about the motivation behind starting their labels, how they hope to grow and evolve over time, and their favorite BG memories. Here, Collectiva’s Concepción Orvañanos. Read the full Q&A below and shop the collection now in store and online at BG.com.
Bergdorf Goodman: What inspired you to start your label?
Concepción Orvañanos: We are passionate about the richness of artisanal craft throughout Mexico and we have been frustrated to find beautiful, intricate handwork done in poor materials and lousy shapes; we feel there is an incredible value and historical richness in this work that is not being utilised. We believe that artisanal work has been underrated and we are passionate about building a brand that supports women. We saw the opportunity of using modern shapes and good fabrics to showcase these crafts, and in this way give them a reach beyond the local. We strongly believe in creating successful businesses with a socially conscious mission; the work and support we give to the artisans is an essential aspect of the business. Many women are making purchasing decisions and choosing brands that align with their personal values of connection, community and giving back.
Collectiva takes the values from Yakampot, our previous brand, and calibrates the product for the international market making it more feminine and with an even stronger emphasis in the hand made aspects. We have a full understanding of the supply chain, and along with Huguette’s design, production, technological partners, marketing and retail team, make a great team to fully accomplish our goals. We have extremely similar values and communication styles, but yet different professional backgrounds resulting in skill sets that strongly complement each other.
BG: What separates your brand from others?
CO: There are successful brands that focus on making aspirational clothes that have an artisan look and make the wearer feel relevant and cool, and other brands that are focusing on sustainability. Lastly, there are some brands focused on artisanal clothing and fair trade. These are mostly local or a very literal interpretation of traditional garments. Collectiva mixes the elements that have made the above brands successful to make something new and authentic.
Collectiva shows feminine silhouettes. Our collections will offer timeless pieces to be worn with ease in everyday life. We will position the women’s collection within the global fashion arena with an emphasis on beautifully made tops and dresses competitively and accessibly priced.
BG: If you had to recommend one piece that everyone should own this spring, what is it and why?
CO: We would recommend the Florentina dress, made using the embroidered linen technique. It has a simple silhouette that is very easy to wear and features a traditional design with the Collectiva artisanal signature. It is a piece that has a social history and impact; each dress gives one artisan one week of job/income.
BG: Who is the Collectiva woman?
CO: The Collectiva woman has a strong sense of purpose and is highly connected to family, friends and her community. She is an independent working woman, living primarily in urban capital cities. She is forward facing, passionate and cares deeply for the world we live in. She is spirited, kind and creative. She is educated and appreciates art and design as a form of individual expression. She is 30-55, however the brand will appeal to women of style and purpose across generations. The Collectiva woman understands the value of well made pieces.
BG: How do you see your brand evolving & what milestones do you hope to achieve?
CO: We envision Collectiva to be the leading brand rooted in Mexican heritage and design, to resonate on a global scale. We plan to partner with more key retailers, develop our website, plus test brick and mortar retail in NYC and Mexico City. Later, we plan to open our own retail store and develop additional product categories.
BG: What is your favorite Bergdorf Goodman memory?
CO: I have a sweet memory of my grandmother taking me to BG during Christmas; it was our secret adventure in search of the perfect gift. Even though I liked lots of things, she always made me choose only one gift, not an easy decision, but in the end it made me value my Christmas present even more.