The thrill of vintage shopping is, to a large degree, the thrill of the chase. And N.Hoolywood's Daisuke Obana is a seasoned vintage collector. That may explain why his collections for the label he designs, always with the influence of vintage, veer unexpectedly from season to season: He's on a hunt for only he knows what. Last season's outing found him channeling Amelia Earhart and twenties aviators. In so doing, he came across Earhart's erstwhile friend, the silent-film actor William S. Hart. His oeuvre was cowboy flicks Wild Bill Hickock, The Narrow Trail, and Obana's favorite, Two-Gun Hicks, which gave the show its title, Two-Gun Hart) and he eventually settled on a ranch in North Hollywood, not far from where Obana once lived.
That was reason enough to hang a full collection on a western theme—not that old-time Americana of the western stripe is anything new for Japanese vintage obsessives. There was enough denim cut into trouser, vest, coat, and poncho for every man good, bad, and ugly, as well as western shirts pieced with contrasting panels. Much of the show was modernized just enough to steer clear of central-casting territory (though Obana likely holds the distinction of showing New York fashion week's only saddlebag).
Part of N.Hoolywood's appeal is that it feels like a collection of good vintage, curated on a seasonal theme. But that's its Achilles' heel, too. Obana is a fantasist with a short attention span. His idol, Hart, on the other hand, was a cowboy his entire career.