Omaha Fashion Week's next season is just around the corner, and we're thrilled to share more about our amazing lineup of designers!

Emerging designer Hannah Hidalgo offers an alternative to buying new clothing.  Her modern yet eco-friendly collection is an example of fashion that comes from sustainable and recycled textiles.

Share a little bit about your background and how you got into fashion.

I started designing when I was about eight years old. It was not until I started watching Project Runway as a kid and saw designers turn their sketches into clothing that I realized I could do the same with mine. I bought my first dress form and started draping blankets from my room to make marvelous gowns. It took years of frustrated attempts at making clothing on my own before I was accepted into the Kent Bellows Art Studio in 2015. With the help of wonderful mentors, I was able to make real and functional gowns, and have now grown my skills to be where I am now, designing a line for Omaha Fashion Week.

 A sneak peek of materials being used in Hidalgo's upcoming collection.

A sneak peek of materials being used in Hidalgo's upcoming collection.

Describe your brand. What are your personal goals, or goals for your brand?

My brand is very modern and falls under the category of sustainable high-end fashion. Behind any decision I make, my focus is to help the environment and to help people. Specifically with fashion, my goal is to reduce the amount of textile waste the industry produces. I intend to work towards this by applying to sustainably driven fashion schools like Parsons School of Design to major in Fashion Design, and also working towards an MFA in Textiles. 

 A leather top repurposed from a deconstructed skirt.

A leather top repurposed from a deconstructed skirt.

Describe your favorite project or projects that you have worked on.

My favorite project I have created was my yellow ochre sack-waist skirt. It was the first real garment I ever made, and the response I got from it encouraged me to continue the path of design. I may never have pursued fashion design if it weren’t for that skirt, and I am forever grateful for it.

Where did you find inspiration for your new collection?

I was inspired to make this collection due to the vast amount of waste that comes from the fashion industry. I wanted to make a collection showing that clothes can be high-end even when they are second hand. I am designing for the new age fashionistas that recognize they don’t have to sacrifice style for environmentally friendly clothes.

 Patterns for a red sheer dress, one of the garments in Hidalgo's upcoming collection.

Patterns for a red sheer dress, one of the garments in Hidalgo's upcoming collection.

Describe the collection you are creating.

The collection will be representative of what our fashion is doing to our environment and, as a result, what our environment is doing to our fashion. The pieces will speak to issues like cotton farming and its water waste, denim production and its hazardous dyes, leather making, and other issues that come with fast fashion. My goal for this collection is to repurpose, meaning all of the materials will have been thrifted in some way. I also plan to utilize the remaining fabric scraps from the collection to make a final piece. 

 The designer's sketchbook, with a more detailed look at the creation process of the red sheer dress.

The designer's sketchbook, with a more detailed look at the creation process of the red sheer dress.

What sort of design elements can we expect from you this season? How is this collection similar or different than your past work?

I am using a lot of black sheer alongside denim, leather, red sheer fabrics, and white cotton. Because the collection is made from deconstructed materials, it will include patchwork elements in every garment, but in a way that looks very chic and modern.

To learn more about Hannah and her work, visit her website and follow along on her art or style Instagram as she continues to prepare for the runway in February! And be sure to grab tickets to Omaha Fashion Week February 27-March 3!

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