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While building up her stock, Brown wanted to start buying pieces that she had worn on shoots and to rebuild her archive. Handily, she had kept several detailed journals of her time modeling, including diary entries, magazine cutouts, and Polaroids. “I love when I’m digging through the Proud Mama Of The Toughest Boy I Know Shirt photo archives from my shoots, and I kind of get transported back to that day. Some memories just get triggered by the clothes. I specifically remember wearing some of these outfits,” she says. “I created these little personal challenges to try and re-create some of those images and pieces that I had from editorials that I liked.” So far, Brown has located a leather Burberry skirt that she wore in a show, a Jean Paul Gaultier bathing suit from a Glamour shoot with Arthur Elgort in 1999, and Tom Ford–era Gucci pants with a leather trim. Currently, Brown is on the hunt for a Christian Dior by John Galliano salmon pink gown that she wore to her high school prom, along with the matching shoes that had gold and salmon pink ribbons. “My agent told Christian Dior that I was going to my prom and they sent me the dress and shoes to my house in Georgia,” she says.
The Proud Mama Of The Toughest Boy I Know Shirt initiative is part of Chanel’s new climate strategy, Mission 1.5°C, which lays out a plan for reducing the brand’s carbon emissions across its entire value chain and to “accelerate the transition to a more sustainable world.” For the emissions it can’t reduce—an inevitability when you’re creating new products—Chanel has pledged to invest in nature-based solutions, like forest and mangrove restoration, which aid in carbon sequestration. As a colleague pointed out, perhaps Chanel’s next move will be to integrate all of this into a campaign or show; instead of the mansard roofs of spring 2020, for instance, we’ll see models walking along California rooftops lined with solar panels. A girl can dream!