Free U.S. Shipping on Orders of $75+

True to her label's "urban-island aesthetic," ABACAXI founder Sheena Sood's home studio is an oasis in the middle of Brooklyn. Lavender walls, Indian embroidered pillows and neon Guatemalan throws reveal Sood’s love of travel, color and indigenous textiles. For her clothing line, which is made locally in New York, Sood sources traditional fabrics from artisan communities in India, then remixes classic pieces like saree blouses into edgy leather crop tops. All around her studio, you’ll find pineapple paraphernalia gifted by friends. These are little reminders of the vision behind Abacaxi, which means pineapple in Portuguese and “channels the tropics–the sun, surf, and lush flora and fauna.” We caught up with the newest member of the Ethica family to discuss her design inspirations and sneak a peek at her colorful digs.  –Tanwi Nandini Islam

There’s such a playful, eclectic vibe to Abacaxi. When did you get into fashion design? I always had an interest in textiles and patterns. Even from a young age, I always used to draw. I went to Brown and studied art, but my paintings involved a lot of fabric, embroidery and beading, which led me into textile design. I did a course in London at Central Saint Martin’s in textile design, where I learned how to weave and print by hand. I moved to New York knowing I wanted to work in fashion, and eventually I got a job at Tracy Reese as an assistant designer.

Working for Tracy Reese is a huge step for a young designer! Yes, I was never trained in fashion design, draping, patternmaking and all of that.



When did you decide it was time to do your own thing? After I left Tracy Reese, I went to India for three months. I just needed a break. I didn’t know exactly what I was going to do when I came back, but as I was traveling in Rajasthan, I started collecting these embroideries that I just loved–vintages pieces from old kurtas. I probably had 20 or 25 when I came back. I had the opportunity to create my first capsule collection for a store locally, and I went for it. Each piece in the first capsule is one-of-a-kind, because I used those embroideries.

What challenges are young designers are facing nowadays? It doesn’t seem easy to strike out on your own. One thing that’s tough is that here in in New York the market is so inundated. I think a lot of stores are bombarded with a million young designers–there’s just too much. Unless you know the right people, it’s hard to breaking into stores. [At this stage], I want to continue to grow the brand, find the right retailers and hire a team. Right now, it’s just me. I want to be able to focus on design and production. From my first capsule to the latest collection, there’s definitely been a growth. I’m learning as I go along, about fit, what fabric is best to use. I want to continue to make each collection better than the last.

Do you gravitate toward certain aesthetics? All around your studio and in your collection, there’s so much of the "cosmopolitan, well-traveled woman" look you’ve cultivated. I’m obsessed with color. I love all colors. From season to season, the colors will always change in my collections--that’s something I’m always paying attention to. In terms of pattern, I’m also really inspired travel. I speak Spanish fluently and love traveling to Latin America. I just love the tropics. Right now I’ve used a lot of traditional Indian fabric, woven and embroidered, but I’d like to eventually work with artisans not just in India but around the world.



Is it hard to recreate these traditional Indian embroidered textiles? Your capsule collection repurposed vintage embroideries, but now you’re designing new ones. Shrujan, the Indian artisan NGO in Bhuj, Gujurat has been really good to work with. Their artisans can recreate the [vintage] embroidery. I draw a design and they send it to a bunch of artisans they work with.

How does sustainability factor into your work? All of my stuff is manufactured here in New York City’s Garment Center. That’s something I’ve been conscious about and would like to continue doing. The fabrics will change from season to season, but there’s definitely a focus on natural fibers like silk and cotton, and of course, a focus on sustainably sourced fabrics.

You’ve got women artisans crafting the textiles and New York Garment workers sewing the pieces. Who’s the woman you envision wearing your clothes? I’ve designed these collections to be very wearable. The focus is really on the textiles. She’s someone who has an interest in textiles, color and pattern. She likes clothes that are flattering, but she’s adventurous and likes to be a little seductive.


Abacaxi FW14 Launch NYC runway image by Udor Photography, courtesy of Abacaxi.

Comments

NERO J

NERO J said:

I came across many testimonies on google testifying of DR EMU a voodoo spell caster that will help you cast a LOTTERY SPELL and give you the rightful numbers to win the lottery, i didn’t believe it, at first but as life got harder i decided to take a try, now my try has made me a millionaire, i have been playing all types of lottery since 4 years now but i have not win up to $1000, after contacting him he cast the LOTTERY SPELL and give me the hot figures behold i won $50,000 now i am a living testimony of the good work of DR EMU, it is my secret but i decided to make the world known too. It might be a help to any one who is interested, this happens last week ago you are free to contact him
Email: emutemple@gmail.com
WhatsApp phone number: +2347012841542
Facebook: https://web.facebook.com/Emu-Temple- 104891335203341

Nicole Morris

Nicole Morris said:

I ordered a job spell on a Friday night and on Monday the place I applied for a job called for me to come by their office. They gave me the job I applied for and made me an offer of more per hour than I have ever made in my life! I am so happy! Government jobs sometimes are a slow process. You somehow managed to speed up that process, and I start in just a few days! DR EMU I will be forever grateful thanks once again. You can call on him for help on his email address emutemple@gmail.com or add him up on his WhatsApp +2347012841542. DR EMU also lent a helping hand to the following } 1. GETTING YOUR EX LOVER BACK. 2. WINNING LOTTERIES. 3. CHILD BEARING. 4. BREAKING OF GENERATION COURSE. 5. GETTING OF JOB. 6. JOB PROMOTION. 7. HERBAL CARE. 8. SPIRITUAL PROTECTION. 9. HERBAL CARE. 10. SPIRITUAL PRAYER. E.T.C.

Nath Mary

Nath Mary said:

I’m so happy to share this with you that can read / see this now. When I started trading binary and forex a few months ago, I really didn’t have the necessary tools to trade and I lost a lot until I met Pablo Martinez who taught me all about market psychology as he managed my account for me. Today I am grateful to him for his great offer and help because it really changed my financial situation with an investment capital of $1500 and now I’m earning around $35,500 – $30,000 profits per week. Here is his WhatsApp no: +44 7520 636249 or his email address: pm7234029@gmail.com

Mato Ray

Mato Ray said:

I’m just too happy that everything is in place for me now. I would gladly recommend the use of spell to any one going through marriage problems and want to put an end to it by emailing Dr Emu through emutemple@gmail.com and that was where I got the help to restore my marriage. Whatsapp +2347012841542

Https://web.facebook.com/Emu-Temple-104891335203341

Leave a comment