Turner leather skirt, $850, and Billie crepe top in Passion, $350, both from Collection 25.
Fashion designer Maria Pinto.
Although silver is the traditional color and material to mark a 25-year anniversary, designer Maria Pinto is celebrating that milestone in the fashion industry with a more contemporary approach. Her newly released limited-edition Collection 25—part of her ready-to-wear label, M2057—introduces a new hue and fabric: Passion (a deep red) and stretch leather. Of the latter, the Chicagoan says: “We wanted to give women a crisp silhouette, yet still allow for movement.” The capsule collection boasts the same attention to construction and fit that Pinto’s clients, among them first lady Michelle Obama and Oprah Winfrey, have come to appreciate about her designs.
Collection 25 is comprised of a dozen pieces ($275 to $1,400): six done in the stretch leather, four made with crepe and two fabricated of a cashmere/wool blend. The range launched Sept. 6, and to commemorate it, Pinto embarked on a series of pop-up shops—including in Silicon Valley and San Francisco. “I love e-commerce,” she says, “but for a lot of people, it’s still important to touch, feel and try on the clothes. And since I can’t run around opening up stores as quickly as I’d like, we decided to do these pop-ups.” (She opened an M2057 boutique in Chicago’s West Loop last year.)
In the course of working on Collection 25, Pinto did her research on leather and its sartorial history. She was struck by the iconic female musicians—such as Debbie Harry, Joan Jett, Diana Ross, Patti Smith and Tina Turner—who favored the fabric. The women served as Pinto’s inspiration: The Jett pants are embellished with side zippers at the ankle; The Ross is a strapless leather top; The Smith jewel-neck jacket hits at the hip; and The Turner skirt has an asymmetrical hem and diagonal pleating. “The leather is perfect for the [Bay Area] climate,” says Pinto. “This is a collection that you don’t ever have to put away.”
Originally published in the September issue of Silicon Valley