Ella Emhoff talks about Stella McCartney, sustainability and her own wild style

Rising model and fashion graduate Parsons is the new face of the latest McCartney adidas collaboration

Ella Emhoff is difficult to pin down. When we finally talk about Zoom – a bunch of revamped calls and meetings have figuratively piled up behind us – it’s just a week after her Met Gala debut, where she stepped out onto the not-so-red carpet in a very red collaborative look of Stella. McCartney and adidas. Some decompression time, she admits, was needed. “I was so excited to be invited, but I was also a little terrified,” she explains. “It’s almost like that big wait to step into something super crazy and completely out of your comfort zone.”

Luckily, the British designer and legendary sportswear giant were there to make sure the rising model and fashion graduate were both comfortable and confident. The pearl-red bodysuit and matching wide-leg pants the trio imagined epitomized Emhoff’s quirky personal style and set him apart in a sea of ​​strapless cut-and-paste dresses. Perhaps more importantly, she also held on to the task – because what could be more American than athletic wear in the daring scarlet hue resplendent in the Stars and Stripes? (Other than being the daughter-in-law of the Vice President of the United States, of course).

While many people thought the collaboration was a bit of a curvy ball for the brightest event on the fashion calendar, a few days later things fell into place. As McCartney ditched his adidas AW21 collection, all the comfy down jackets, sleazy loungewear and tech details, Emhoff was heralded as the face of the accompanying campaign, and suddenly it all made sense. With McCartney fostering a sense of creative community in his commercials, Emhoff joins Lourdes Leon, Kaia Gerber and Grimes, who have all featured prominently in recent years.

“When Stella and the adidas team first came into contact with me, I was super excited because I have very deep memories attached to the collaboration since I was younger,” reveals Emhoff. “I was so excited to work with someone whose values ​​match mine so closely. We are both very passionate about sustainability and see how imperative it is for the fashion industry to change. Graduating from NY’s Parsons earlier this year, Emhoff is now embarking on her own career as a designer, favoring a slow, steady approach. “My first collection is finished, but it takes time,” she adds. “It’s so important to me that I start off on the right foot and make a difference in the industry. Working with Stella opened my eyes. There’s another way to do it, you know?

As the adidas by Stella McCartney AW21 collection hits stores, below Emhoff talks about his early fashion memories, A $ AP Rocky’s Met Ball look, and his own wild style.

Hey Ella! So first of all, how did you end up staring in the new adidas by Stella McCartney campaign?

Ella Emhoff: It was a bit unexpected, but when Stella and the adidas team first got in touch I was super excited because I love everything Stella stands for. We are both very passionate about sustainability and see the profound importance of change within the industry at this time. Not only do I love her designs and her style, but I’m blown away because she is doing so much of what so many other fashion brands need to be doing right now. It is so important to let it be known that you can still have really high quality things without it costing the earth.

And so you just graduated from Parsons earlier this year. How do you feel about entering the fashion industry at this point?

Ella Emhoff: I feel like I’m at a really interesting point right now, both with my modeling and my design. With modeling, it feels like the definition of what a model is has really changed over the past few years. It’s not just about being someone who can wear whatever clothes a brand wants you to wear, it’s also about being someone who has a unique point of view or something to say. , and use your platform in a way that is powerful or beneficial in some way.

Starting my own label has also been very exciting, as I’m doing it alongside so many other young independent brands trying to do the same thing I’m doing – trying to get started on the right foot. Using materials and production methods that are not going to plunge us into a deeper hole. I take my time with it.

And do you feel like fashion is advancing when it comes to sustainability or do you think it is dragging its feet?

Ella Emhoff: I feel a mixture of the two, honestly. Because it’s up to a lot of people to change, it’s so hard to make sure everyone sees things the same – no matter how many individual brands are making these changes, it’s a collective effort. . So it’s frustrating that only a few see the situation we find ourselves in, especially when it’s these huge brands that make up a big part of the industry that play out as they always have. I feel like we’re making progress, because people are talking about it very frankly, but I think it’s going to take a lot more for everyone to get on with it.

So tell me about your Met Gala look …

Ella Emhoff: There’s almost that expectation for you to get into something so crazy and out of your comfort zone, but Stella and adidas have really taken into account my need for comfort and my personal style, which is pretty laid back and lends itself to it. to sneakers. and pants and things like that. So I felt very seen. There was a lot of back and forth and conversation to keep everyone happy.

“I was definitely aware of fashion from a young age. My mom is super trendy and loves clothes, and I would always sneak into her closet and try on her shoes and dress and try on wigs “- Ella Emhoff

What was your favorite look of the night, beyond your own?

Ella Emhoff: Oh there were so many beautiful looks! But one of my favorites was A $ AP Rocky in ERL, who is one of my favorite designers working right now. This puffy, almost quilted cape was awesome. And I also loved the whole Thom Browne team, they looked so good.

How would you describe your own style?

Ella Emhoff: It’s so funny because I feel like before I started modeling and being in the fashion industry, I never really thought about it. I certainly haven’t been able to sum it up in words. But I think I would say it’s always changing, with a baseline of comfort and color, in a way. I really wouldn’t say there is a style or aesthetic that I feel more drawn to. It changes from day to day, which is why I sometimes look at my closet and feel like five different people exist in one body. It’s fun to be able to experiment.

When was the first time you understood the power of fashion?

Ella Emhoff: I was definitely up to date with fashion from a young age. My mom is super trendy and loves clothes, and I would always sneak into her closet and try on her shoes, dress, and try on wigs. I had the opportunity to explore my style from a young age, and I feel really lucky that I was able to do so because it has really helped me feel comfortable now when it comes to to wear what I want – with no regrets!

Do you have a favorite piece from the new adidas by Stella McCartney collection?

Ella Emhoff: This is a difficult question because I love so many pieces. I think my favorite is the sleeping bag jacket, the large puffer jacket. It’s so cozy and cozy – it’s like a cocoon because you feel super warm and safe inside. I will definitely be wearing it a lot in my next New York winter.

You’ve been the face of a Stella campaign now, but do you think you could ever collaborate on a collection? Thinking of his recent Ed Curtis crossover and your Batsheva line …

Ella Emhoff: I mean, I can’t speak for Stella herself, but I hope so! I think we could do some great things together.

What’s the next step for you?

Ella Emhoff: Modeling took over for a second, but I finally have studio space and am launching my first collection right now – it’s actually almost, ish, done. I move on to how I want to present it, how I want my label to look like kind of a phase. So I’m figuring this out, but honestly, I can’t wait to share it with everyone.

It’s hard to know when it’s done or when it’s not done, but now, once the creation process is done, it’s more about how I want to present it, how I want to create my label. , how I want to do a lot of these things. So it’s moving forward, it’s close. I can’t wait to share it with everyone.

To manage here to discover the adidas by Stella McCartney collection.

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