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Cannabis on the Catwalk

The weed leaf can been seen almost anywhere--even in a Fashion Week runway show.

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The catwalk is the brightest soap box on the planet. Strong designers are making a statement without saying a word. A select few are celebrating the properties and aesthetics of cannabis. Whether it’s designing with hemp over polyester or creating luxury leaf print lounging pants, the pro-cannabis fashion designer is well placed to combine advocacy with creativity.

Industrial hemp production is only just making a comeback in the United States. For the most part, hemp fabric is imported into the country. In the last few years, a number of established designers introduced hemp into their lines including Ralph Lauren, Stella McCartney, Yves Saint Laurent and footwear gurus Vans. Indie designers too have found inspiration in the aesthetics of the iconic marijuana leaf.

New York fashion designer Mara Hoffman has been a proponent of legalization for many years. She stated in a recent interview that she found the actual marijuana plant “beautiful.” This could explain its abstracted image sprinkled throughout her spring 2015 collection. Hoffman and her young son, Joaquin, bedecked in leaf print made their way down the catwalk at the end of the show.

Richard Chai is another designer bringing a cannabis accommodating lifestyle to the catwalk. Pax’s line of luxury vapes debuted at Richard Chai’s show at this year’s New York Men’s Fashion Week. During an interview, Chai admitted he wanted to be the designer that introduced the vape pen to the fashion world. The luxury vape pens were made a part of the guest goody bags at Chai’s show. Chai is one of a few designers to appeal to the luxury end of the cannabis lifestyle.

Designer to celebrity stoner Miley Cyrus, Jeremy Scott is well known for his youth focused street wear and his pro-cannabis outlook. Scott‘s most memorable work are his pieces for Adidas that featured a pot leaf print. He recently designed all of Cyrus’ costumes for the 2015 VMA awards which focused around Cyrus’ pro-cannabis stance. Designer and celebrity collaborations make for a powerful message.

Rozae Nichols of Clover Canyon sent a cannabis leaf down the runway in 2012. As part of a collection inspired by the landscapes and culture of California, the distinctive cannabis and disco ball print blazer in silver and vivid greens, as well as a skirt and tank top in the same design, certainly turned heads. Nichols is another designer quoted as saying that the cannabis leaf is “beautiful.” Love for the iconic leaf may play a large role in the designer’s choices but only pro-marijuana folks design pro-marijuana dresses.

Jewelry designer Jacquie Aiche may be best known for her marijuana leaf clutch bag sported by celebrity pot smoker Rihanna. Aiche has incorporated the “sweet leaf” into many of her pieces referring to it it on her store’s website as “our signature olive lambskin sweet leaf patch.” When asked about her medicinal muse during an interview, Aiche stated that using the leaf emblem was her tribute to California.

The cannabis and fashion collaboration also comes in at an affordable price point through lesser known artists. The Robbie Ann Collection found at the Cannabis Clothing Store offers leaf inspired clothing aimed at the middle youth market. This upcoming Denver based reflects the emergence of affordable mainstream cannabis print designs in the wake of Colorado’s legalization.

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Despite being a movement in its infancy, pro-cannabis designers are making bold statements in the world of fashion.  The range of cannabis inspired clothing continues to expand offering leaf worshippers designer ways to wear their support. Sending cannabis down the catwalk keeps the conversation out in the public space; exactly where it needs to be.

Are you over 18?