PARIS–The boho chic, French brand known for its quirky “Hello I Love You Can You Tell Me Your Name?” label, toasted to its recent work with the Peruvian government to promote Alpaca fleece worldwide.
At a cocktail party attended by members of the press and fashion insiders, Paris-based Leon & Harper celebrated its recognition by the Peruvian government for its efforts in promoting Alpaca del Peru and its latest fall winter 2017 collection which was made of naturally dyed, knitted Peruvian yarns. Each garment bears the Alpaca del Perú label, a distinction granted by the Peruvian government only to a handful of sustainable brands.
Since October 2016, Leon & Harper has collaborated with the southern lake community of Puno, vis-a-vis Heifer International, a charity organization dedicated to ending hunger and poverty around the world by safeguarding the livestock in small farming communities and providing training to locals of those towns. This fall winter 2017 collection marks the beginning of a long relationship with Peruvian craftspeople. Going forward, 30 percent of Leon & Harper’s knitwear collection will be made in Peru by factory workers in Lima and craftspeople in the small town of Puno.
In terms of style, Leon & Harper’s knitwear designer Argelia Jimenez Perez drew inspiration directly from her tour that expanded throughout the alpaca heartlands of Peru’s mountainous border.
On her journey, Jimenez Perez was exposed to the historic artisan craft and farming techniques that have kept the alpaca trade alive and propelled it into the 21st century. Raised at altitudes that rise over 4,000 meters, Peruvian alpacas are known for their rarity and delicate, ultra thin fleece fibres that have been coveted by European luxury wool mills and knitwear labels for decades.
The hallmark of the collection is the chunky, heavenly soft knits and patterns that conjure images of the alpaca-grazing grasslands of the Peruvian Andes. Looks feature classic patterns, as well as jovial accents like alpaca patterns and folkloric prints. Overall, the capsule was influenced by Peruvian culture, yet also captures the spirit of Boulevard Haussmann street style and the wardrobe of the effortlessly classy, casual, modern and enlightened Leon & Harper muse of today.
Philippe Corbin, who founded his label in 2010, has said that the Leon & Harper woman is inclined to wearing boyish yet feminine fashions that further exude her sense of confidence and her awareness of the quality and origins of what she is wearing and if her clothes were made in an eco-friendly way or not. A sign of the times, this collection is definitely tailored for a woman who appreciates ethical fashion.