Jonny Cota, the inaugural winner of Amazon’s “Making the Cut” fashion competition series, hosted by former “Project Runway” stars Tim Gunn and Heidi Klum, debuted his own line of women’s apparel on the influencer-led platform Thursday, marking the first time a male personality as well as a professional designer has been called in to create a here-today-gone-tomorrow collection.
The Drop was concepted as a means to capitalize on the extensive and engaged fandoms of fashion and lifestyle influencers, tapping these public figures to co-design exclusive, street-style-inspired capsules. The small collections, which average about 10 pieces or less, are sold during a 30-hour window and manufactured to shopper demand, an effort both to feed off exclusivity and FOMO while minimizing production waste.
Cota, known for helming Los Angeles-based streetwear label Skingraft for 15 years, boasts experience in the industry that sets him apart from partnerships past, including an October line with Kylie and Kendall Jenner and drops from Los Angeles lifestyle influencer Quigley Goode, plus-size style blogger Caralyn Mirand, and athletic wear titan Reebok, to name a few. Taken together, the evolution of The Drop indicates Amazon’s ambition to expand and enhance the platform’s possibilities.
Cota credited “Making the Cut” for helping to launch his namesake label and bring his “elevated, yet effortless, L.A. fashion sense” to a global audience. “Now, I’m thrilled to debut my new collection for The Drop, which is edgy and confident while prioritizing accessibility and comfort,” he said.
Cota’s line, which will be available until late Friday, includes easy-wearing staples like button-down blouses, and soft, ribbed cotton dresses, as well as weekend-ready and business casual frocks with chic necklines and cold-shoulder details. The designer described an eye-catching animal-print jumpsuit as a “comfortable and easy” “favorite” that’s “ready to slay.”
The line ranges from around $55 to $80, and is shown styled with footwear and accessories from Staples by the Drop, the program’s micro-line of ever-available complementary products.
The new, affordable capsule stands in contrast to the designer’s core product line from Jonny Cota Studio, characterized by oversized and sometimes androgynous silhouettes, along with bold patterns and animal prints. The premium line, which features dresses, jackets, jumpsuits, tunics and streetwear-inspired sweatshirts and joggers, retails for between $65 and $850, and launched on Amazon after the designer took the top prize on the streaming video design competition.
Cota received $1 million for his win, along with access to a one-year mentorship program with Amazon Fashion and the opportunity to sell his collection on the Amazon Fashion store.
The designer’s work with Amazon embodies the tech titan’s almost unparalleled opportunity to merge content and fashion, all in the name of commerce. Amazon has been no stranger to giving consumers new ways to shop, with Prime Wardrobe’s try-before-you-buy service as just one example of its innovation in the apparel arena. And now that entertainment is cozying up even more closely to fashion, leveraging the personality and following of the winning designer from its effervescent reality TV fodder to sprinkle his sartorial sensibilities onto styles for the masses just plain makes cents (pun intended).