THE COLLECTIV | Adriana Pavon

I have met some amazingly talented people in my life that has inspired me in so many ways. I was introduced to the designs of Adriana Pavon while modeling in Fashion In Detroit 2010. We recently had an opportunity to catch up to talk about her newest collections (set to debut this fall) and to get insight into her journey as an independent designer and business woman:

Detroit Fashion Designer, Adriana Pavon | Image via Adriana Pavon
Detroit Fashion Designer, Adriana Pavon | Image via Adriana Pavon

Define your personal style and how it has been reflected in your designs.

My style is comfortable and active, My designs had been a reflection of the high-end clientele, for the made to measure market. My lifestyle is hectic so dressing up seemed like a lot of fun, but now my designs reflect me even more – where I want to feel good and look good. My new collections are more of a reflection of my everyday needs, I’m releasing two collections back to back: one geared towards the active lifestyle, we as women endure everyday, and the second  is a contemporary collection to fit our professional lives. We have to look polished and yet we want to be comfortable.

Where do you find your greatest source of inspiration when conceptualizing a new collection?

I often look at the end client, like I mentioned before I was designing custom pieces so my process was to meet with the client and understand who they were and what type of event they were going to attend.

“The Muse” for the new collections include the growing problems that affect us all as humans. Such as global warming, lack of kindness towards others, the well being of our future selves, and a compilation of the women in my life that I admire. Today’s women are friends, wives, daughters, sisters, business women and mothers that are doing it all without skipping a beat and having fun with it. I’m lucky to know many wonderful, powerful and well centered women in my life. So, I wanted to design something we can wear without having to compromise style, quality, comfort or personal values in order to look good.

What new trends and designs can our readers look forward to seeing from the Adriana Pavon Collection in the upcoming season?

The new brands are focusing not only on what is sustainable today but sustainable for the future, we are taking Eco-Friendly to the next level. The ” Highroad Society” brand hopes to be an example of a new way of manufacturing and how business is done. For the green manufacturing process, we want to reduce our carbon foot print by sourcing American and Michigan-local whenever possible. As to how our workers are treated, we’ll have free bikes for them to commute, free healthy meals and free workout programs for those who wish to participate.  The first “Highroad Society” line will be exclusively made for our supporters of the Kickstarter campaign launching this September. We hope the second collection can be sewn in a solar power plant here in Detroit in the summer of 2014. 

Highroad Society Fall 2013 - Adriana Pavon Designer | Photo Credit:
Highroad Society Fall 2013 – Adriana Pavon Designer | Photo Credit: Tim Leo, Photographer – T34 Studios, Michigan
  • Using soft organic cotton, we will dramatically reduce pollution and wasted water. Paper tags will be made with recycled paper manufactured here in Michigan and printed with Eco-friendly inks;
  • All materials will be sourced and handcrafted in the USA;
  • Each piece will have a GIN ( garment identification Number) to show how the garment was born. It will have a tag that describes where the materials came from, who designed it, and who’d sewn it.  A warranty that never expires comes with every piece of clothing we sell; and,
  • Eco-dye will be used, made of natural materials instead of chemicals.

“We believe in clothing that makes you look and feel good…while doing good. More than just a clothing line, the Highroad Society is a movement.”

What has been the most inspiring and challenging moment you’ve faced as an independent designer?

About a year ago, a client bailed out on me with payment of six figures and filed a lawsuit in order to protect herself from me filing one first. I had to let go of my employees, and pro-bono work I was doing for a local non-profit suffered the consequences. It was not only financially devastating for me, but also emotionally hard. To make matters worst this was happening while launching the Detroit Fashion Collective. I had peers implement my curriculum in the local universities, while others took my contacts with Congress after I extended and invited them to a talk I was going to give in Capitol Hill and started a very similar initiative as DFC with their friends. A young local designer along with other people in the industry, who had no idea what had happened nor whom I knew personally, created a social campaign both to help the local non-profit and mostly to showcase the mistake I had made. Basically, I was publicly humiliated for the enjoyment of others and the encouragement of gossip in the community. 

That experience was hard but it had been the most inspiring as well. I had to give myself a kick in the rear for the mistakes I made and a pat on the back (I must be doing something good if many people are implementing my ideas). I just learned to implement the non-competitive/confidentiality agreements more strictly, revisited my contracts, and built a stronger skilled team. This helped me become a better business person and have a deeper appreciation for the good people I have in my life – from friends to colleagues. Searching deep into what truly makes me happy and refocusing all my energy on that was the birth of the two new collections, they encompass many aspects of me.

To learn more about the Detroit Fashion Collective, please click here.

Based on your experiences, what advice would you give to an aspiring designer who may be overwhelmed or fearful of his or her success in this industry?

Never allow others to set your standards, set achievable goals, be kind to others, don’t waste time with negative or lazy people. Don’t wait for something to happen to be happy. Everyone brings a lesson in your life; personal growth, professional experience or gratitude for what you have. And, most importantly work hard.

Enjoy your journey to success it won’t happen overnight and the lessons & experiences along the way are what makes great memories.

ADRIANA PAVON, Fashion Designer

Disclaimer- The opinions expressed in this interview are those of the interviewee, and do not necessarily represent the opinions of Cold Hard Fash or Credential Group, LLC.


  1. I see style as being apart of your daily life, as it sets your mood and how others see you. It could be as simple as a bow tie to a dinner jacket or that hat that match your tie. Your outer wear is just a small part of any design, so how you pull things off is a matter of your own expression…..make it count..make it you

  2. Having had the opportunity to work with Adriana for several months now, I can’t express how she has impacted my life for the better. She is truly a blessing and inspires me to follow my dreams everyday. Everyone makes mistakes and that’s the beauty of life is we have the chance to correct them. I love Adriana’s designs, her as a person, and her views and hopes for her line. I can’t wait for everyone to join the Society.

  3. This is a wonderful interview!

    In life I have learned that there are always two sides to a story! I would be foolish to run with a half a story trampling someone’s name and reputation without really knowing the whole thing (Detroit is True) One should know that the internet isn’t a very reliable source specially since anyone and everyone with an opinion can get on it and ramble on.

    There are many kinds of people in the world – those who give and those who take… I have had the pleasure of meeting Adriana Pavon. I can say that she has her heart in the right place, her dream is to help the people in the community of Detroit using her giftings in fashion and help many generations in that area by providing jobs and inspiring then to go beyond what they believe they can achieve!
    She is a giver not a taker, she’s truly an inspiration not just to me but many others and her mission is something I can get behind!

  4. That sucks when people hold you to the highest high when you are doing something for them. But as soon as a mistake happens, whether it be by the hands of you or by the other party people will be quick to throw you under the bus without really hearing the story, or by hearing a half truth. The time I’ve met and worked with Adriana Pavon have always been a pleasure. And she’s always showed me respect, honesty and straightforwardness. We all make mistakes and are sometimes caught up in others mistake– it happens! People should forgive others just like they’d want others to forgive them.

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  5. Really like this blog. Disappointed to see the article on Adriana Pavon and the writer who didn’t check her facts before your blog is associated with this person. Public online fact shows that in the lawsuit her client paid her the money and judgment shows she didn’t deliver to the client and the client won the judgment for Adriana to pay her client back. Also, she says pro bono work? Pro bono for the public article for that Detroit youth boxing group means no payment to her right? Last I read, the group paid her and she ran with the money. If you download the lawsuit that is public, shows that during the time she took the money from the kids, she also had to answer and file responses back to the lawsuit, so maybe that’s where the kids money went to. Sorry to say, but you need to check your facts before associating yourself with this person. Also, interesting that the new location for Highroad Society in Detroit has no address in Detroit at all? She talks a big game, as she did with all of her clients. Show us the facts and also do your research before writing about someone you don’t know. The facts are all out there.

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    1. Thank you for commenting.

      As mentioned in the post, the article on Adriana Pavon was an interview of the designer. It was specifically to highlight her career as a fashion designer. The disclaimer following the interview clearly states that the opinions are those of the interviewee. We are not a blog of gossip. This was simply an interview of a designer who had inspired many of our readers.

      We are glad that you really like the blog and invite you to subscribe so that you may continue to be a part of our growth.

      Thank you.

      Crystal Lariece

      1. Thanks Crystal for the clarification. Just really like your website and didn’t want someone like her to use your site to promote her lies. Anyway, really want to know if she ever paid back the kids after all this year, since she seems to have the money to expand her business. She should have been able to now, but I can call and ask the Coach tomorrow! Thanks again!

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        1. Detroit is True,

          I’m unsure what your motive is behind your negative comments regarding my persona, but allow me to THANK YOU for being a prime example of why I started the Highroad Society.

          People who have a sense of righteousness, entitlement, perpetual negativity, lack of sense of self, and toxic attitude have empowered me to launch the new clothing line, a brand that supports everything I believe and am truly passionate about: people, planet and manufacturing.

          Being human comes with the disadvantages of making mistakes but the opportunity to correct them.

          Let me save you the trouble of trolling the Internet for any and all articles that may come up about me.
          The supporters of the Highroad Society are positive, educated and smart individuals who can form an opinion of their own. Don’t make the mistake to confuse “moving forward “ with indifference, I’d lost all of my “worldly possessions”, yet, been blessed with resilience and true friends who are supportive of the movement and for What it stands for, proving that you can make a difference even when money is not part of the equation. I have worked with each one of the genuine affected parties and have a repayment plan in place. Not only have I been able to rebuild the relationships but have strengthened many of them.
          I invite you to visit my Blog to learn more about me while I share what I’m passionate about and the kind of society I want o be a part of.

          Make the life you want for yourself and don’t let others who have no influence in your life dictate how you live it.

          My wish for you “Detroit is True” is this:
          1.- That one day you don’t have to hide behind a screen name to voice opinions you feel so strongly about.
          2.-Find a sense of purpose in life (other then following my every step) because there are bigger & better things to do.
          3.- Join our events so you know what Highroad society is building is a great thing and you no longer will have to speculate and misinterpret others motives.

          Have a great day everyone!

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