Balbina Brunell

Fashion Product

An Analogy of Tarnished Culture

In today’s rapidly changing world, the tension between tradition and development is often palpable. This collection explores the conflicting forces of heritage and gentrification coalescing into one, offering a fresh perspective on how culture evolves in the modern age. As we find ourselves at the crossroads of heritage and progress, the pursuit of a greater future raises questions about who it truly benefits. These products serve as a reflection on this dichotomy, offering a bold critique on how our relentless race towards advancement has estranged us from the cultural tapestry that once bound us together, integrating the impact industrial progress has had on heritage through materiality and form.  

As the collection bears the scars of rust, once-familiar Mexican touchstones are distorted into barely discernible cultural signifiers, tarnished in the face of advancement, creating a nuanced narrative of transformation and a testament to the shift in priorities amidst the passage of time, emerging An Analogy of Tarnished Culture.
The core of this collection lies in its materiality. The vegetable-tanned leather, meticulously treated with reimagined traditional techniques, serves as a parallel to cultural evolution, echoing the overarching theme of the collection.
Inspired by Mexico's industrialization, which surged with the establishment of the steel foundry, metal became a crucial element in the collection. It not only functions as a dyeing agent for the leather but also symbolizes tarnished identities amidst progressive modernity.
Michelle Brunell
Nadia Egarmina

Paul Delloz

Video Editing
Balbina Brunell
Abby Video
Make up
Yaritza Martinez
Dana Muzraeva

Production Assistant
Audrey Gonzalez

Michelle Brunell


Originally from Monterrey Mexico, Balbina moved to New York to study Fashion at Parsons School of Design. Her education was significantly influenced by a fascination with leather, leading her to specialize in fashion products and leather goods. This focus awarded her the opportunity to further explore leather working methods by collaborating closely with Tuscan leather craftsmen and tanneries specializing in sustainable production methods, inspiring her to integrate traditional techniques within a modern context. Balbina exhibited a capsule collection featuring her bespoke technique at Lineapelle 103 during Milan Fashion Week where the collection was awarded first place in the Craft the Leather Emerging Designers and Makers Competition. Alongside her academic pursuits, Balbina also obtained certifications in Business Administration, Entrepreneurial Management and High Performance Leadership from universities including IMD, ESADE, and IE Business School.