Gucci and Adidas Pop Up in L.A., Tommy to Launch Dog Line, a London Designer Goes Cosmic
POP-UP PARTY: “I feel like I’m in a backyard in Brooklyn right now,” said Meeka Hossain outside the doors of 8400 Melrose Place in Los Angeles, where Adidas and Gucci held a shoppable pop-up — and outdoor dance party — on Friday evening to celebrate the launch of their capsule collection. The digital content creator, a Los Angeles native, is a fixture at fashion events.
“It’s a time warp back to ’70s disco, all the fun neighborhood things you’d see at a block party in New York,” Hossain went on.
Closing off a section of Melrose Place, the night featured performances by local talent: Dance L.A. Entertainment breakdancers, Let’s Jump, L.A. — the jump rope and double Dutch team — and the L.A. Roller Girls, who skated through the crowd offering BBQ staples like sliders, hot dogs and sweets that included spiked Jello shots.
“These are dangerously good,” remarked a passerby, grabbing two gin-infused gelatin treats.
The crowd let loose. Outside they drank and mingled, sitting on bleachers and picnic tables overlooking a basketball court. Inside, they shopped, largely grabbing accessories and hoodies. The collection itself, vibrant and retro, was the inspiration for the decor.
Many of the guests matched the backdrop, dressed sporty, on theme in the new collection. The event brought out designer Jerry Lorenzo, who turned heads everywhere he went; sisters Langley Fox and Dree Hemingway; activist and designer Aurora James; designer Waraire Boswell; director Melina Matsoukas; artist Cleo Wade; French content creator Lena Mahfouf; music artists St. Vincent, Teezo Touchdown, Soko and Mallory Merk; actors Lena Waithe and Jeremy Pope, as well as pro athletes Bogdan Bogdanović, Chiney Ogwumike, Nneka Ogwumike and Isaiah Simmons.
The celebration continued on Saturday when the public was able to visit the space via appointments. The address, once home to Marc Jacobs, is now a Gucci brick-and-mortar. The Italian brand will unveil the shop in coming months. — RYMA CHIKHOUNE
TOMMY FOR FIDO: Tommy Hilfiger is tapping into a new market. The company has signed a licensing agreement with Kanine Pets World Ltd. to launch Tommy Hilfiger Collection for dogs.
Hilfiger’s first collection for dogs will launch in 2023 and includes apparel, accessories and home products for dogs, all created in the signature Hilfiger All-American style.
As reported in WWD, a growing number of top-tier luxury brands and retailers have gotten into the nascent but growing pet accessories business, ranging from Saint Laurent dog dishes and striped Thom Browne leashes to Versace dog beds and Prada raincoats.
The Hilfiger dog collection will be designed, produced and distributed globally under license with Kanine.
Among the offerings are classic roll-necks, preppy striped sweaters, branded hoodies, three different styles of raincoats and a selection of classic and bow bandanas. Across the collection, the trademark red, white and blue color palette is complemented by seasonal pops of blush pink and jade green.
Essential pieces include a braided leather leash set, a lightweight sport set and a leash set with a collar, harness and leash made from stripe fabric and leather straps. All sets are designed with Hilfiger’s flag logo and can be completed with a nylon or silicone bag holder. The collection is rounded out by padded dog beds, pet carriers and travel accessories. Woof. — LISA LOCKWOOD
The designer, who studied at Central Saint Martins and trained on Savile Row, creates made-to-order clothing for clients, which she’s able to produce quickly, by hand, in a workshop in Battersea, London.
She can turn around an order in five days, and sources many of her fabrics in the U.K. Her aim is to keep the supply chain as short and nimble as possible.
She only makes the orders that she books from clients, thereby avoiding end-of-season waste. She doesn’t have to worry about factory minimums, sell-throughs or other challenges that the traditional wholesale model can present for an emerging designer.
McCroary conceives themed capsule collections and drops them throughout the year. She sells via private events, the latest of which takes place on Tuesday on the terrace of The Mandrake hotel in London.
“Fashion is a bit stuck at the moment,” said the designer. “A lot of brands are too big to pivot, but we’re small enough to make changes, and to move things forward.”
McCroary’s latest capsule is called Cosmic Age Part Two. She has teamed once again with the young artist Izabela Olesinska (whom she discovered on Instagram) to create a series of fun prints that depict an imaginary destination beyond the stars.
Her inspiration was Elon Musk, his company SpaceX and his fascination with far-flung travel. With that in mind, she wondered what Earth-dwellers might wear on Mars, if they ever manage to make it there.
“I wanted to reflect on the times that we’re living in and look at how normal civilians would live in outer space,” said the designer. “And I love the fact that no one took Elon Musk seriously about space travel, which is why he decided to become his own engineer.”
The prints are cartoonish and uplifting, with Pop Art-inspired palettes and lots of clashing pink, turquoise, yellow and red. They appear across luxe, heavy silk twill pajama-inspired suits and coordinated sets. Buttons are made from bio-resin or mother-of-pearl.
Quotes include “The Sky Is Not the Limit,” “The Greatest Voyage Is Still to Come,” “Welcome Aboard the Sanne Space Station,” and “The New Cosmic Age.”
McCroary said she wanted the colors and graphics to be “fun, bright and energizing,” and said her silky pieces feel “incredibly sexy, even if they’re not figure hugging, or revealing.”
Prices range from 500 pounds to 3,000 pounds, with shirts in the 800 pound to 900 pound range, and shorts and trousers costing 650 pounds to 750 pounds.
With her mind locked on a greener, no-waste future, McCroary plans to unveil a capsule in September that’s made entirely from old cashmere scarves she’s sourced from eBay. A few months ago she made a similar collection using used denim she’d sourced on the site.
December’s drop will be around a new theme: McCroary is moving from outer space to the metaverse, NFTs and Blockchain technology, although her clothes will be for Earth dwellers, not avatars. — SAMANTHA CONTI
CHARITABLE NFTS: Boy Meets Girl, the young contemporary ath-leisure brand headed by Stacy Igel, designer and creative director, has partnered with 11 women artists on an NFT collaboration, along with her own artwork.
The six NFTs launched on Boy Meets Girl’s foundation site, foundation.app/@boymeetsgirlusa.
This is a 1/1 limited-edition NFT project. With the sale of these NFTs, starting at 1 ETH, the buyer of the NFT will receive one limited- edition Boy Meets Girl hoodie designed with the artwork. One third of the proceeds from the sale of the NFT goes to each artist and 30 percent of the net proceeds from Boy Meets Girl earnings is being donated to the Chicago Abortion Fund.
The way the project worked is one artist put their work in the Boy logo and another artist put their work in the Girl logo. “It is the act of collaborating all together and helping amplify the work of others. I have always done that through my brand and beyond thrilled to do this with all these artists,” said Igel, who created her company in 2001.
In addition to Igel, the artists include Ami Ankin, Antares Vargas, Stacie A. Buhler, Bri Romano, Rachel Wilkins, Lori Grace Bailey, Sophie Elgort, Adriana Krawcewicz, Ann Li, Talia Zoref, and Lost Girls Metaverse.
Elgort, the photographer and director, said about her NFT: “I’ve always been fascinated with lips, all the different shapes, and sizes. Each pair with a different story. Inspired by Adriana’s illustration, I went back into my archives and found lips I’ve photographed over the years and cut them out in a collage.”
In the same NFT, Krawcewicz, a Polish-born multidisciplinary fashion NFT artist, whose image appears inside the girl, said, “I love the ethos of Boy Meets Girl which promotes equality and inclusivity; this is very much aligned with the vision of the NFT community and I wanted to show it through my artwork. Since I am a fashion illustrator, I wanted to portray it through diverse women who represent different women and minorities, feeling empowered and beautiful by applying lipstick.” — L.L.
MEN’S TURN: Ballet dancer Jovani Furlan has had a year of ups and downs. That’s now culminating (in dance terms, as the performing arts wrap up their schedules for summer break) with the launch of his new performance clothing brand Furlan Dancewear, which is among the first male-specific lines for dancewear available. And Furlan is coming at it with a decidedly fashionable approach.
The line is just the latest achievement for Furlan — who started the year in his native Brazil, unclear if he would be granted a visa to move back to the U.S. in time for New York City Ballet’s post-lockdown stage return. Since then, despite personal struggles, he’s returned stronger — ultimately promoted to principal dancer in February and debuting in a rapid series of key Balanchine roles.
One could say that Furlan, who has been dancing professionally for 12 years, previously for the Miami City Ballet before joining NYCB in 2019, has enough experience to know what is missing from the male dancewear market. And so mid-pandemic, while still living with family in Brazil and looking to utilize the time offstage, that’s exactly what he set out to do.
“I did a lot of research on male-dedicated brands and could only find a couple. There are mostly brands that have sub-brands dedicated to men like Capezio and Bloch,” said Furlan, who produces the line in Brazil from locally sourced fabric.
To launch, Furlan Dancewear includes a tight edit of unitards, leggings, shorts, a biketard, and an elastic belt that was made to enhance the lines of the body, or hold up billowing pants as dancers like to do.
They are produced in a color palette that recalls costumes from Jerome Robbins’ postmodern, Phillip Glass-scored classic “Glass Pieces” — a shade of sage green, merlot red, blush pink, sky blue and simple black.
The colors, which can be mixed and matched or worn singly for a monochromatic effect, were important to Furlan, who felt like color was generally missing from men’s dancewear options. “I wanted more than tights in black, gray and white. I wanted almost a sense of fashion. My pieces are simple — all solid colors — but you can play with it and wear a shirt over it and layer.
“I wanted something that doesn’t constrict you. The main massage is how dancers present themselves day to day and I think fashion is a big part of that,” he said.
Furlan is already considering extensions like legwarmers and hoodies. Everything is priced between $19 and $75 and is exclusively available on Furlan Dancewear’s own site, but Furlan is considering certain wholesale partners for the future.
But the brand could have legs beyond dance. In promotional imagery photographed by Alinne Volpato in Brazil on dancers from Furlan’s hometown studio, designs are featured with more of a luxury, performance wear angle that could invite shoppers from other athletic disciplines to join in.
“I wanted to showcase dancers’ physicality, not in a balletic way. I told them to be themselves and be athletic — don’t think of yourselves as dancers,” he said.
Furlan, feeling like “I couldn’t do this just for myself,” is donating 10 percent of brand proceeds to a scholarship for young male dancers in Brazil to help realize their dreams, just as he has. “I always relied on scholarships, it was such a struggle. As if dance wasn’t hard enough, I had other challenges to try and find someone to support me. Even if I impact one student a year it’s so important to me,” he said. — MISTY WHITE SIDELL