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Opening Ceremony has always been a cheerleader for pioneering global fashion, but we were especially excited to check out their latest arrival—Suno, a limited-edition line of womenswear crafted from one-of-a-kind Kenyan sarongs called kangas. Designers Max Osterweis and Erin Beatty were on hand at the La Cienega boutique this Saturday, where they introduced LA shoppers to a portion of their 1,000-piece debut collection.
"I've been collecting kangas for 12 years," says Osterweis, a New York-based filmmaker whose family owns a home in Kenya. "During the post-election violence, I started to think about how I could help to change the world's perception of Kenya. The world I know isn't one of political turmoil—it's a beautiful place with very talented people." Soon after, he teamed up with Beatty and a team of Kenyan garment workers to create Suno, turning his kanga collection into everything from cropped blazers to flutter-sleeve tunics and tiered minis.
While Osterweis admits it was hard to get rid of his wildly-patterned textile trove, he's clearly caught the design bug—the team is working on its fourth womenswear collection, and is planning to launch menswear and jewelry for fall. "I want to create lasting jobs in Kenya rather than just giving a handout," he adds—the true definition of guilt-free shopping.
· Suno [Official Site]
· Opening Ceremony [Official Site]