Michael Kuluva's 2018 Spring/Summer Collection and Raising Awareness about Rheumatoid Arthritis

Patient Expert
Michael Kuluva at his 2017 New York Fashion Show for Tumbler and Tipsy. And homage to Troop Beverly Hills.

“It’s all about being Troop Tipsy and having fun.”

Michael Kuluva’s Spring/Summer 2018 collection is an homage to the movie “Troop Beverly Hills,” a favorite of his when he was growing up. “We have a fun brand, and a fun aesthetic, so we’re going to take a fun little detour on our camouflage collection,” he told me in a conversation that included an exciting preview of the new collection from his Tumbler and Tipsy label.

Sponsored by CreakyJoints for the second year in a row, Michael is showing his new line at New York Fashion Week on September 13, 2017 at 3 p.m. The show is streaming live on the Tumbler and Tipsy Facebook page and Instagram account.

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A look from Michael Kuvula’s 2017 New York Fashion Week show.
GettyImages for Kia

Coming out with rheumatoid arthritis

One year ago, Michael Kuluva used a very creative way of telling the world he has rheumatoid arthritis (RA). He designed a clothing line that illustrated what this condition feels like. The Spring/Summer 2017 line of Michael’s label Tumbler and Tipsy was covered in starbursts, especially around the joint areas.

“I was a little scared about maybe getting some negative feedback but everything was so positive,” Michael says. “It’s amazing that my voice has been able to get this far out in the community and [to] be able to try to get people to be inspired and know that this is not a debilitating disease by any means if you follow your passion.”

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An homage to Troop Beverly Hills, the theme for Tumbler and Tipsy’s 2018 fashion line.
Credit: Getty Images for Kia

Working with CreakyJoints

Seth Ginsberg, cofounder and president of CreakyJoints, spoke to me about the organization’s experience with sponsoring a fashion designer.

“We love working with Michael. He’s been an amazing example of how a person living with arthritis should not set their limits or ambition just because they’re also managing a chronic disease,” Seth says. “It’s a really good opportunity for us to reach folks that we might not otherwise have reached and help them understand that there is a wealth of resources.”

Both Michael and Seth mentioned how successful their work together had been so far, contributing to raising awareness about not just RA, but also the work CreakyJoints does with, for instance, the Arthritis Power app and their new Patient Guidelines.

Next up for Michael Kuluva and CreakyJoints

In addition to premiering his new fashion line at New York Fashion Week, Michael is also venturing into television. “I will be on a TV show called Growing Up Supermodel, which is on Lifetime on Wednesdays,” he says. His episode will appear “right after the show premieres during New York Fashion Week.”

CreakyJoints is continuing its work to raise awareness and advocate for arthritis. One of the organization’s goals is to make the Arthritis Power app available outside the US. “Coming soon,” says Seth.

Check out the video interview with Kuluva (and some of his Troop Tipsy fashion pieces) and Ginsberg!

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Make s’mores, not wars—a tagline we should live by.
Getty Images for Kia