Alabama Chanin: 21 Years of Sustainability

Alabama Chanin - School of Design and Early Work Life, 1980-1989

School of Design and Early Work Life, 1980-1989

Natalie “Alabama” Chanin graduates from the School of Design at North Carolina State University with a double major in Environmental and Textile Design. Today, this is called the Anni Albers Program in honor of the beloved Bauhaus textile designer. 

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Alabama Chanin - Nicole Phelps, 2002

Nicole Phelps, 2002

Nicole and Natalie met for the first time in 2002, when Nicole covered new designers at Elle magazine. Nicole goes on to build an illustrious career in fashion, moving from Elle to Style.com and, eventually, to Vogue where she is currently the director of Vogue Runway.

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Alabama Chanin - Lola Schnabel @ Project Alabama, 2002

Lola Schnabel @ Project Alabama, 2002

The Lola Montes Schnabel collaboration is presented at New York Fashion Week.

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Alabama Chanin - Vogue and Julia Reed, 2002

Vogue and Julia Reed, 2002

Vogue’s Julia Reed visits Project Alabama in 2001, the start of what would become a longstanding relationship shared between Natalie and the publication.

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Alabama Chanin - Chelsea Hotel and 9/11, 2001

Chelsea Hotel and 9/11, 2001

What began as a one-off project becomes a business as the third collection of designs is prepared and presented in a suite at the Chelsea Hotel. Then, the horrific events of September 11th unfold and forever change America

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Alabama Chanin - Project Alabama and Partners, 2001

Project Alabama and Partners, 2001

At the Chelsea Hotel show, orders are taken from a handful of stores around the world that include stores like Barneys NY, Barneys Tokyo, Fred Segal/Ron Herman LA, and Browns in London.

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Alabama Chanin - Sally Singer, 2001

Sally Singer, 2001

Sally Singer and Natalie meet for the first time in 2001, when both are living at the Chelsea Hotel. A decade after their first meeting, Sally gives Natalie the most beloved compliment of her career. 

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Alabama Chanin - Julie Gilhart - Barneys New York, 2001

Julie Gilhart - Barneys New York, 2001

Julie Gilhart and Natalie meet for the first time in 2001, shortly after Barneys New York becomes the first stockist for the new t-shirt collection. Over the years, they share many meetings, conversations, and adventures.

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Alabama Chanin - Chelsea Hotel, 2001

Chelsea Hotel, 2001

A first showing of the 200 one-of-a-kind t-shirts is planned for the Chelsea Hotel as part of New York City Fashion Week, February 2001.

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Alabama Chanin - Stitch, 2000

Stitch, 2000

While seeking out former quilters in and around northwest Alabama, Natalie also interviews people about the act of quilting and its impact. The oral histories capture stories of how community members learned to quilt, examine the role quilting played within the community, share family histories, and reveal much about life in the region

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