Everything you need to know about Coco Rocha’s athleisure line Co+Co
“Modern, clean and sport-chic.” Three words Coco Rocha uses to describe her latest Co+Co collection. The Canadian model-turned-designer recently relaunched her lifestyle website in conjunction with her fall athleisure line and debuted it to her Canadian fans a few weeks ago. The response? Nothing but praise. Featuring colourful digital prints (or in her words “glitch print”), clean silhouettes and beautiful “street-tech” material, her street-meets-sport collection oozes nothing but high-fashion feels (and all at an affordable price point!). So, in celebration of her new designer venture, we chatted with Rocha about everything from why she chose not to tell her friends about her new collection, how modelling has helped and the best advice she’s received from her designer circle of friends.
Did you get advice from your designer friends when you started designing?
Before we officially announced it I decided to keep Co+Co a secret and really I didn’t tell anyone at all. It was a hard secret to keep, but I wanted to let everyone find out on their own. I didn’t want to ask for any favours or special treatment from the industry. I just wanted to let the collection speak for itself. Now that it’s finally out I’ve been amazed by the way my friends, designers, editors and models have reached out and offered some great advice.
What was the best advice you got and from who?
“Don’t just design for yourself” was a motto and industry tip that I kept in mind while creating the collection. The designers I know and love always work that way. For me personally, I have such varied taste in clothing, but I wanted to make sure I was giving this brand a very specific DNA and vision. I think we achieved that.
How did your modelling experience help with the design process?
I’ve been modelling for over 14 years now and have been lucky enough to work with the most talented designers and photographers in the world. I feel like that was an education in fashion you just can’t put a price on. Seeing these giants of fashion work, how they move an idea to a creation has been so inspiring. I’ve learned a lot, but I still have much more to figure out.
Was there anything you learned about yourself when you delved into this new area of designing?
I think it has given me an added layer of confidence. I was unsure of myself before the spring line came out, but once I saw the reception it got, I feel like I’m on my way as a designer.
As a model, you’ve worn some of the most beautiful couture gowns – what made you decide to tap into the athleisure market?
I’m such a big fan of so many styles. I love vintage, streetwear, pret-a-porter and couture. I love it all, but I thought a lot about what was missing in the market before we started designing at Co+Co. I realized that in this $80 to $300 price range, it’s really hard for a girl to find clean, architectural pieces like she sees in high fashion magazines and runway shows at her local department store. I wanted to give girls an alternative – beautiful fabrics and fashion forward designs – all at an affordable price point. That’s what we decided was going to be the DNA for this collection.
Can you explain the term ‘street tech’?
I have always loved tech and fashion— to me they go hand in hand, or at least they should. We really wanted the collection to reflect that, whether it be the innovative fabrics or the prints. Fabric was a priority, and scuba material and sports mesh both pop up frequently in the collection.