Showing Today | Tara St. James

Tara St James is owner and head designer for the Brooklyn-based clothing label Study, a high-concept fashion brand primarily produced in New York City. St James was born and raised in Montreal, Canada but has lived and worked in New York since 2004. Formerly the creative director of Covet, a mainstream eco-friendly sportswear collection for men and women, St James left to start Study in September 2009.

Fall 2011 will be Study’s fourth collection; it pays homage to her mother whose chic 80’s style and fashion aesthetic was St James’ inspiration to become a designer. The collection continues to examine no-waste patternmaking and St James works with local artisans in India to create very limited edition runs of hand-women textiles. She is looking to expand this specialized production other artisans around the world. St James homes to add more accessories, expand fabric development with fair trade organizations and hopefully add a menswear line in the near future.

A strong and driving presence among young sustainable designers, St James lends her talent and skills to various organizations. She is fashion director for The Uniform Project, a fundraising platform using sustainable design to raise money for underprivileged children. As a mentor at the Awamaki Lab, a program that fosters cross-cultural partnerships between young designers and Peru’s Awamaki indigenous weaver collective, she facilitates discussions about the intersection of sustainability, ethcial sourcing and product innovation.

Believing that open source materials play a strong role in the development of the sustainable design community, St James start Study Hall in the summer of 2010. Under her guidance, Study interns developed, produced and sold their sustainable mini collections. Study Hall can now be found at several retailers in New York City and abroad. St James is very open about her production and design process and documents these regularly on her blog at www.4equalsides.com.

St James is the recipient of the 2011 Eco Domani Fashion Foundation award under the sustainable design category. She will be presenting her Fall/Winter 2011 collection during New York Fashion Week.

St James is also good at math and loves organizing socks.

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