An hour before the show is about to begin fashion designer Paola Hernandez is prepping the looks, models are hanging outside texting on their phones, and the bartender is setting up his station. It’s pretty hot and chaotic inside Churner and Churner Gallery, the Chelsea art space that is hosting Hernandez’ Spring 2014 Collection titled Singularity, and we don’t mind the mayhem one bit.
For the past couple of seasons, ever since Hernandez’ relocated from Mexico and set up shop in the Lower East Side, we anticipate her shows and not just because the clothes are uber modern and chic but because she presents the clothes atypically. Throughout the gallery space French artist Julien Gardair has created black heart-shaped streams that all stem from one line, so it’s evident love is in the air.
As Hernandez tells us the theme behind this collection is about “how you find consciousness in others and I think that’s in the heart.”
While makeup artists and hairstylists are making last minute touches, there’s a handsome man with dark hair and black rimmed glasses making sure everything is just right. He isn’t Hernandez’ assistant, well, not really. He is artist Michael Kagan, and Hernandez’ new husband. And it’s clear this beautiful union seeped into her latest collection.
“I think [my marriage] inspired me to have more brighter colors,” Hernandez says glowingly in a gorgeous orange silk poncho dress, which comes in navy blue as well.
Saying this collection features more color is an understatement for Hernandez, who in the past has shown monochrome lines entirely in black and gray. So this show is quite a stretch and she executed it extremely well. Hernandez says that manufacturing the clothes in New York, as opposed to sending her ideas off to her native country, has helped her carry out her work more effectively.
“It’s taken me three years to find my team, a strong team that could work with me because when I decided to move from Mexico City to New York City it shifted the whole organization,” Hernandez says. “This is the first collection that is made in the Garment District and I really enjoyed the difference.”
What we appreciate most about this line is that Hernandez made a exemplary cohesive collection, which include her own line of shoes, and yet each piece is very particular and unlike the rest of the looks.
“I think I like women that are chic and comfortable,” Hernandez says, “and know how to dress in a simple way and yet be beautiful.”
Which looks do you like?