Jonathan Cohen expands both his innovative and creative capacities in launching his new capsule collection entitled The Studio. The Studio is an evolution of the Jonathan Cohen brand that has been curated completely out of upcycled fabrics — the collection signifying the brand’s entrance into direct-to-consumer e-commerce. The New York-based RTW luxury designer delves further into his sustainability initiative, tackling waste issues that have resulted from garment industry manufacturing for many years.
With the purpose of expanding their ready-to-wear brand while inherently producing less waste, Cohen and his CEO and business partner Sarah Leff have created a collection entirely made up of fabrics recovered from previous seasons. That includes 47 SKUs inspired by bestselling silhouettes, including the Dede and Nicole dresses, from the runway collection in fabrics dating back to spring 2016. For the first time, Jonathan is offering a unisex shirt, inspired by a classic men’s camp shirt, available in multiple prints and sold in men’s sizing.
The Studio has been a really exciting way to continue our ready-to-wear brand and put a system in place to deal with excess waste. Creating something new out of materials that would otherwise be discarded results in environmental and financial benefits.
– Jonathan Cohen
Cohen and Leff have always been enthusiasts of sustainable design and responsible business practices. After a shift to digital sketching resulted in 1,500 sheets of paper saved per season, they studied other ways to offset waste. Fabric use was an obvious point of interest. Jonathan’s signature prints and textile designs, inspired by his parents’ Mexican heritage, are the label’s defining code. All post-production fabric is now collected from the brand’s New York factories to be potentially used in combination with materials for The Studio, with the goal of achieving zero yards of fabric landfilled.
Approximately 10 to 20 percent of textiles are wasted during garment manufacture. “We started noticing that all of our excess fabric, ranging from scraps up to a four-yard remnant after cutting, were going into a bag and theoretically going into a landfill.
– Sarah Leff, CEO Jonathan Cohen
The Studio will also be a destination for ongoing circular-minded collaboration. Jonathan partnered with Weaving Hand, a Brooklyn-based healing arts center where disabled adults practice their developmental skills — in creating zero-waste skirts and jackets, along with patchwork bags created in collaboration with Italian designer Luisa Cevese Riedizioni.
The Studio prices range from $95 to over $3,000 and are independent of Jonathan Cohen’s main collection and traditional seasonal wholesale calendar, with merchandise delivered based on creative opportunity. The collection is available through the brand’s e-commerce channel, while Cohen’s primary collection continues to partner with wholesalers.