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This designer’s NYFW show closed the (gender) gap between fashion and wellness


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Photo: Instagram/@collinastrada by Jonathan Hökklo

The fashion and wellness spaces have been inching closer and closer together to the point where they’re no longer occupying mutually exclusive spaces: Crystals are inside clothing, activewear is part of high-fashion collections, and runway shows are becoming woo-woo experiences. Epitomizing that movement was the recent New York Fashion Week show for indie designer Hillary Taymour’s autumn/winter 2018 Collina Strada collection, which is all about embracing positivity, abolishing gender norms, and celebrating yourself—specifically your higher self.

The show was inspired by Bunny Michael, an empowering icon of the Instagram community who uses their account to document memes and conversation between them and their higher self. Taymour staged her show as a wedding ceremony and enlisted Michael to officiate. Actress and photographer Sasha Frolova acted as the bride and married her higher self in the ceremony.

The collection features an array of genderless clothing made from reworked materials and sheer panels of organza. Frolova and the other “wedding guests”—who ranged in age from newborn to senior—wore clothes and face paint that literally spelled out positivity such as “Only love” and “Higher self.”

As a population, we’re often overwhelmed by an almost constantly negative news cycle and are all susceptible to the self-comparison trap. So, in response, Taymour explained to i-D, “I wanted to encourage people to stop propelling hate and to really look inward.” She added, “On social media, you can be whoever you want. But, really, do you know yourself? Do you love yourself? Look inside, figure things out, and take that into the world.”

I’ll be using this as inspiration for a high-fashion outing with my higher self this Valentine’s Day.

Not sure how to celebrate this Valentine’s Day? Here are some ideas for what to get yourself (your higher self), and what to get if you’re celebrating with a BFF.  

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