Tell me and I forget, teach me and I may remember, involve me and I learn.
Designer Stella Jean is a popular young Italian-Hatian fashion designer most known for her artisansal textiles and prints developed with the women of Burkina Faso & Mali.
Stella Jean’s signature designs attract actresses like Zendaya, Issa Rae, Naomi Harris, and Rihanna who wore Stella Jean H2T on her trip to the White House in 2014.
While sourcing African textiles for a new collection Stella Jean stumbled across beautiful textiles developed using an ancient artisanal technique. After locating and visiting with the artists Stella learned the craft was in danger of becoming a lost tradition. This gave Stella Jean the idea to start a program to record and redevelop these ancient crafts so they live on.
Stella Jean’s new program One, No One and 100.000 Kilometers is a preservation project and an artist collaboration project. Jean integrates lost techniques into her contemporary fashion design with the goal to see these ancient traditions reborn into society.
The project title is metaphoric. ONE is based upon where she was born, Italy. NO ONE is representative of the distance to connect to oneself. And ONE HUNDRED THOUSAND is the distance Stella Jean covers to connect with artists.
Stella Jean travels to indigenous communities around the world to meet with artisans, listen to their stories, and when possible, propose they work together to create new fashion through the Stella Jean brand.
Each collection will involve a new collaboration between an artist and myself, by means of the creation of a unique product or performance inspired by different parts of the world. Stories woven to mine.
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Stella wears a high-waist bustier skirt, tailored from a textile advertisment billboard of a lady’s hairdresser in Benin, painted by the Beninese artist Eusèbe Adjemile with local bio-cotton, handwoven by Beninese women artisans, and hand embroidered in Italy by the artisan and artist Ambra using recycled materials. #OneNoOne100kKm #GCFAItalia #CNMI #MFW #ArtisansFirst #BeninesePopArt #LeMétissageFaitLaForce #HandPainted #HandEmbroidered #DirectorOfCulturalHeritageOfBenin @ecoage @cameramoda @greencarpetfashionawards
Right now stories and collaborative designs of the shy Assaad (Damascus, Syria – 100.000km), the Moro (Jacmel, Haiti – 100.000km) and the eclectic Ambra (Terni/Umbria, Italy – 1km) feature on the Stella Jean website and social media.
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Stella and Eusèbe brainstorming – Eusèbe Adjemile is the artist who realized the textile advertisement billboards transformed into the skirts you see at the sides of this post. #OneNoOne100kKm #NothingAbouthThemWithoutThem #BeninesePopArt #ArtisansFirst #LeMétissageFaitLaForce #HandPainted #DirectorOfCulturalHeritageOfBenin
This program is one of the positive ways designers show cultural appreciation and it is an exciting new way to highlight humanity and global culture through fashion.
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