Thursday, June 20, 2024

Mara Hoffman Announces Final Collection: ‘My Work Is Far From Done’

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Sustainable fashion designer Mara Hoffman has announced the final collection of her eponymous label.

“After what I believe to be a gorgeous run of 24 years, I have decided that it is time to take a pause for an inbreath,” designer Mara Hoffman wrote in a letter posted to her Instagram account this morning. “Our Spring 2024 collection will be our last offering for the time being, allowing me the space to reset and redirect my vision and energy into other creative outlets. We will sell this final collection and existing pieces until we have sold what we have left to offer. I am so proud of this body of work and know what it means to so many of you as well.”

Calling the experience “nothing short of extraordinary” Hoffman said the label “made me who I am,” by allowing her to create beauty and then “have it live in the world in such a meaningful way,” she wrote.

“To have the privilege to work with and for women and to be able to have some level of impact on their lives, even in small or subtle ways. This has given me such purpose and joy and I know in my heart, this is what I am here to do in this life. It has been an honor to step into a position of responsibility, to become an example of change in this industry, and show the potential for new systems that are more loving, Earth centered, and kinder. I will forever remain an advocate and supporter of the tireless work being done by the exceptional people working in this space.”

But Hoffman notes that working in fashion, particularly within the sustainability movement has been far from easy “on so many levels.”

“We have been fighting for what feels like a long time to make this vision and model work in an industry that I believe deep down in its heart wants to heal and become better,” Hoffman said.

“But at the end of the day, its structure is archaic and was never built to prioritize Earth and its inhabitants. It’s no secret that its ‘success’ is still bound to harm, unchecked growth and extraction in so many ways. Although I am choosing to redirect my participation, I remain hopeful that there is potential for positive change. Knowing that there are so many incredible people working towards new systems, technology and legislation, we have a chance at this.”

Hoffman is an American fashion designer known for her vibrant, colorful prints and commitment to sustainability. She founded her eponymous label in 1999 after graduating from Parsons School of Design in New York City. Initially celebrated for her bold, eclectic patterns inspired by world travel and nature, Hoffman has since shifted her brand’s focus towards sustainability.

In 2014, Hoffman restructured her business to emphasize environmentally friendly practices. This transition included using organic, recycled, and regenerated materials, reducing waste, and ensuring fair labor practices. Her collections feature swimwear, ready-to-wear, and bridal lines that maintain her signature aesthetic while prioritizing eco-conscious production.

mara hoffman dress spring 2023
Mara Hoffman is one label prioritizing ethical labor and eco materials | Courtesy

Hoffman collaborates with various artisans and organizations to support ethical manufacturing processes. Her brand is a member of the Council of Fashion Designers of America and aligns with Cacale (formerly the Sustainable Apparel Coalition). Hoffman is widely regarded as a leading voice in the fashion industry’s movement toward greater sustainability, combining style and environmental responsibility in her innovative designs.

Speaking to Vogue, Hoffman explained how the problem with overconsumption has been a driving factor in her decision. “Right now, anywhere from 15 to 45 billion pieces of clothing that are produced go unsold every year,” Vogue reports, and those pieces most often end up in landfills or in secondhand markets, or in places like Chile’s Atacama desert.

Hoffman also wanted to retain her name, which an outside investment could have threatened, the designer told Vogue. “It was the right time while I still own my name,” she said. “I’ve been using this saying, that it’s almost impossible to be dying and trying to give birth at the same time. You have to make time for both. I’m not saying that the business itself was dying, but that this industry is calling for a great change. And as a thought leader, it’s really hard to give myself that space to think of new ways to do that.”

In her Instagram post, Hoffman said that maybe we all need to see “someone make this choice. She wrote, that to “show us that endings of cycles are also beautiful and that there is so much grace to be had when we lovingly LET GO when it is time. When we can trust in a new version that is forming even when we cannot see it yet. When we actively choose something else, something embedded in love, healing and Truth as opposed to staying put in something that has run its course. I take solace in knowing that if I move in the direction of what is true to me it will help inspire others to do the same for themselves.”

The designer thanked her team, her customers, and her family for supporting her over the years. “My work is far from done,” Hoffman wrote. “I am looking forward to resting for a moment and then welcoming beautiful new invitations into my life.”

She continued, “I know that I am here to help, and I am so excited to see how this unfolds.”

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