Made in California: Clover Canyon’s Masterful Prints a Breath of Fresh Air

With a colorful, eclectic collection made entirely in Los Angeles, Clover Canyon injects New York Fashion Week with a breath of fresh California air.

New York Fashion Week was very black and white and monochrome this time around. This is practical but, let’s face it, we need some color on our lives. This made Clover Canyon‘s presentation at Lincoln Center’s The Box feel even more like a breath of fresh California air. The label’s Spring/Summer 2013 collection was an explostion of bright colors and crazy prints, featuring geometric shapes and paisley mixed with California pop culture icons like muscle cars, soda bottle tops, steering wheels, surfers, highways, mountains, prairie homes and a certain kind of medicinal plant, with a sprinkling of sequins thrown in for good measure.

Launched only last year, Clover Canyon received instant appreciation from fashion editors and buyers and can now be found at major retailers like Saks Fifth Avenue, Nordstrom, Net-a-Porter and Shopbop. Creative Director Rozae Nichols, who had her own eponymous line for 15 years, has lived her whole life on the west coast. She decided to make local production an important part of the label’s DNA, stating: “Clover Canyon is made in California, and always will be.”

From the label’s atelier, Clover Canyon’s design team works collaboratively on designing the original prints, and hand-engineering them to frame and enhance the body. All garments are designed, patterned, cut and sewn in-house, using an innovative mix of new technology mixed with old world craftsmanship. “I have a wonderful team, a glorious design team,” Nichols tells Harper’s BAZAAR. She goes on to say that the label is able to maintain an accessible price point by “creating an in-house science and precision that we’ve mastered with no waste or excessive burden. The fabrics are humble, they’re not insanely expensive. We make Clover Canyon look expensive because of the artistry.”

Nichols has been focused on prints for a long time, and with Clover Canyon she completely surrenders to them, making it the focus of all the label’s collections so far. “We approached Clover Canyon with a new attitude for print and made a commitment to making it about saturated color,” she says. “Part of the magic is the research we do to make the images very opposite and juxtaposed.”

There’s no doubt that prints are having a fashion moment right now, but Clover Canyon still stands out from the crowd. One is not drawn to these fantastical garments because they happen to be what’s trendy right now, the precise mix of tailoring and placement of the patterns gives this collection a timeless appeal that will surely make it stand the test of time. That, along with the outspoken commitment to local production, is what we really love about them and welcome with open arms.

All photos by Johanna Björk

Johanna Björk

Johanna is a sustainable fashion writer currently based in Ojai, CA. Read her weekly On Trend column to learn what's new in eco fashion.