September 16, 2008
"It's all about Beverly Hills, 90210. I bought a box set of the first series1991, not the new one," declared Henry Holland of his collection, "Sex, Lies, & Volleyball." Holland is a guy with a neat turn of phrase, a nose for the cute reference, and a knack for focusing the energy of a friendship group (who doesn't know his best mate is Agy Deyn?) into a now internationally recognized London phenomenon. Does this make him a designer of the class of Christopher Kane and Marios Schwab, who came up at the same time as him? By no stretch of the imagination. This is purely a pop-slash-club teen thing, and as cheerful, upbeat, and funny as Holland is, he's not about to change the face of fashion.
Liberally spattered over T-shirts, cycle shorts, and chiffon blouses, his polka-dot, hydrangea, daffodil, and rose prints looked exuberant. In the end, though, they were overshadowed by the jeans Holland has cooked up with Levi'seither polka-dot printed or with the dots laser-cut into the fabric itself. It's a smart collaboration, and even if his main collection isn't much more than a few simplistic, hyper-colored pieces, the opportunity to contribute cool ideas to a giant denim brand looks like a smart hedge against an incoming mood that's certain to be less tolerant of amateurism