In the spring of 2023, Alli Toffolon ’14 will officially launch Alli Blair New York, a one-of-a-kind, sustainable clothing line with the tagline: "Where playful style and ethical living meets conscious consumerism."
Toffolon credits Berkshire for her keen awareness of and appreciation for the importance of sustainability. She attended Southern Methodist University (SMU), where she took a course in Italian fashion, studied abroad in Italy, met her fiancé, and immersed herself in Italian culture. Not coincidentally, the nearly 100% plastic-free, organic, and recycled fabrics she uses at Alli Blair New York are imported from Italy.
Realizing her future was in fashion, Toffolon transferred from SMU to Parsons School of Design, earning an associate degree and the distinction of valedictorian.
Prior to founding Alli Blair New York, Toffolon was a designer for Sachin & Babi, working on fabric development, main collection design, and collaborations for partners such as BHLDN, Anthropologie, Dillard’s, and Carolina Herrera. She also managed all communications with Sachin & Babi’s fabric manufacturers and garment factories.
During the early days of the pandemic, Toffolon sensed a void in the marketplace for this kind of clothing at a reasonable price point, and the idea for the Alli Blair label was born in June 2020. Now just a short time later and armed with rich experiences in education and the fashion industry, a sustainable mindset, and an enterprising attitude, we can’t wait to see what the future holds for Toffolon and Alli Blair New York.
See a sneak peek of the Spring 2023 collection below!
Please enjoy a Q & A with Toffolon below:
When did you realize that you were “all in” with creating Alli Blair New York?
I think I always knew that I wanted to have my own company. It was important for me to follow my values in my work and that’s really what made me decide that I needed to go off on my own. The second I decided to form Alli Blair New York there was really no turning back for me.
What have you learned so far about running your own business?
The most important thing to know is that you can’t do everything yourself. Take the help when you need it and take the advice being offered. I wish I had known how long it would take to raise an investment. It is a very long and grueling process, but at the end of the day, it is all worth it.
In what ways is your Berkshire experience present in your life today?
What Berkshire taught me about living sustainably is still very present in my life. Also, Berkshire teaches every student amazing time management skills which have been so helpful in all aspects of my life. And learning to foster great bonds with friends and even teachers has also enabled me to have great relationships in all areas of my life.
What are your fondest memories of your time under the Mountain?
Probably my greatest memories are when my friends and I would go on morning hikes to see the sunrise over Buck Valley. Life just doesn’t get much better than that.
If you could offer any piece of advice to today’s students, what would it be?
I would tell them to treasure it while it lasts; you’ll look back at this time forever. Also, I would tell them that you don’t have to have everything figured out about your future before you go to college. The world is a big place, and there are countless jobs you could never think of that could give you a happy and fulfilling future.