Organic Inspiration

by Anna Griffin, Editor in Chief

As we breeze into summer, we look for inspiration in long, warm, sunny days, and wardrobe staples that will take us effortlessly through the season. Ultimately the most organic inspiration for our closet comes from eco-friendly fashion pieces, knowing we can shine at any event while being kind to the environment.

Designer, Deborah Lindquist, has been a pioneer in eco fashion since starting her own line in Manhattan in 1983, and is drawn to “rescuing” vintage and gently-used materials to incorporate into her collections, giving them new life. Integrating organic fabrics including hemp, cotton, and linen, Deborah’s desire is to make women look and feel beautiful, believing that how we dress helps us to tell a story of who we are.

When approached by fashion photographer, Ruben Domingo, to dress models, Adut Atem and Monica Atong, for a studio photo shoot, Deborah said, “I loved the opportunity to showcase my favorite pieces, favorite fabrics, and create art with a team I love to work with.”

Wanting to inspire happiness and a positive outlook for the future, she added, “I love Duta and Monica’s unique and graceful elegance, and the simplicity of working with natural light in a studio. For the wardrobe my instinct was seasonless pieces that can be layered a little, a lot, or not at all. I used neutrals, but also a lot of color because I felt we could all use a bit of color therapy to boost our mood, from the pale pastels of the slip dresses to the brightly colored cashmere sweater looks and safari-themed appliques.”

For the shoot, Deborah chose pieces made from mainly upcycled/vintage fabrics, including cashmere, parachute, denim, leather, but also organic wool and deadstock fabrics that she uses to create one one-of-a-kind and limited-edition pieces. “Upcycled fabrics are eco-friendly because I rescued them from being cast off - as if they were trash - into the landfill. Organic wool is eco because the sheep were raised organically, and the wool fabric was finished in an eco-conscious textile production. Deadstock is leftover rolls of fabric from production or samples, and fits into the eco category as the fabric itself was potentially headed for landfill,” she said.

Inspired to shoot her new pieces against a studio backdrop, Ruben added, “We wanted to do something with very clean, light backgrounds to have a lot of contrast with the bright and vivid colors of her designs. I love the fabrics and textures she uses, and her designs are very original and one-of-a-kind.”

“I think with all the pollution that's in the atmosphere and in the ground, it’s very helpful for the environment if we can repurpose some, if not all, materials that would normally just go into a landfill. It's a bonus that Deborah turns them into art.”

Photography by Ruben Domingo

Styled by Deborah Lindquist

Makeup by Betsy diFrancesca

Models: Adut Atem and Monica Atong