When our talented friend Patricia Reyes visited New York recently, she made a personal photo series capturing her resident sister Monica Reyes wearing beautiful designer clothing—rented from Albright Fashion Library. We talk to her about life in NYC and conscious fashion choices.
Hi Monica! How are you?
– I’m great. Back home after being on the road for a few days.
What are your days like right now?
– I’m currently in the very early stages of developing a hair care line for women with curly hair. My goal is to create vegan hair care products that are toxin-free, paraben-free, sulfate-free, using plant-based biodegradable bottles. Our focus is to make the greatest positive impact on hair and scalp health with the least negative impact on the natural environment.
You live in New York, right? What are your favorite spots there at the moment?
– Yes. I have been in New York for about 15 years. I moved to Brooklyn last year and I’m absolutely loving it! One of my favorite places is Sincerely Tommy where I grab a coffee and check out the beautifully curated concept store. They have ready-to-wear and unique accessories.
– Eva Jean’s is our neighborhood restaurant—a local farmers table with a great vibe and delicious food. Another favorite spot is the vintage shop 10 Feet by Stella Dallas, which I hit whenever I’m in Williamsburg.
Above: Dress, Lanvin. // Suit, Jean Paul Gaultier. Shoes, Céline.
What can you tell us about the clothes you’re wearing in the story for Make it last?
– Everything I’m wearing comes from the Albright Fashion Library, which has been stockpiling some of fashion’s best creations for years, and accordingly, is an essential resource for stylists, designers and celebrities. The idea of wearing outfits from Albright, rather than buying new ones, appeals to me. How many of us have gone through our closets every so often to get rid of all the clothes we thought we would use when we bought them, but never wore? Personally, I’ve done that too many times and have decided to change my approach to my wardrobe.
– I prefer to buy from thrift and vintage shops, and only buy things that I’m absolutely certain I will wear, and instead of spending money on an outfit I might only use once, I can go to Albright and pull something really special. Patricia and her team at Albright are super knowledgeable and helpful. I can go there and tell them what event I need an outfit for, and they’ll provide me with some great ideas. All in all, it’s a more conscientious approach that allows me to at least do my part in reducing the amount of waste I’m responsible for, and it’s also more economical.
How was it shooting with your sister, photographer Patricia Reyes? Tell us about the day!
– I love shooting with Patricia. We always have fun and she makes me feel very comfortable. Patricia always shows a great amount of respect for her models. I love that she explains what she is trying to achieve so that everyone is involved in the process.
– The day started quite chaotic because the night before we had a crazy “bomb” cyclone in New York, and it busted one of our pipes depriving us of running water. But none of that stopped us from shooting.
If you could recommend any brand with a more conscious approach, what would it be and why?
– I love Fe Knits—a sustainable knitting company based in Brooklyn. All their fibers are pure and completely renewable. Every piece is handmade and they produce in small batches to avoid waste. I own four of their knits and can’t stop wearing them.
What do you look forward to most right now?
– Vacation, vacation, vacation. Winter has been long and I’m looking forward to a little break in Jamaica. I’m also looking forward to working on our roof garden.
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