JR: What exactly is CALA?
MP: It’s a three month incubator program where we help designers nurture brands and help design their collections. This year we worked with some Parsons students to do a three month program where we would choose about 5 to 10 of these pieces to do production for. So we helped set up an online store, LLC and an official business.
JR: That is so cool
MP: Yeah so we did all the casting, hair and makeup, all the press. We hired Gia Kuan to handle the press. We did all of the marketing and social as well. A lot of younger designers start out and they may know one aspect of a business, like a design part, or another part but there’s also all these different supplemental aspects that when you’re doing your own LLC you have no idea.
JR: It’s mostly with new brands that are just starting out?
MP: No, we work with pretty much everybody. We have well established brands too you know, like a Parsons student. But we did this special for someone just starting out to kind of like pave them and teach them the way. Right now, I’m working with a graduate and then they basically have like three months where they get all these workshops to come in maybe like twice a week or three times a week.
JR: How do you choose who you’re going to use for these projects? What’s the process? Is it like a competition or do you just go in and say “that one?”
MP: Kind of. To be honest I think it was like who’s the most interested.
JR: What do prices for pieces range from?
MP: 300 dollars for a big puffer coat to 90 for t-shirts. It really ranges.
JR: Is this a competition you’re going to be doing every year? Or like every season?
MP: To be honest, I’m not sure if we’re going to continue this one but we may change it up a bit in a different way. It may not be Parsons for example, it may be….