September 04, 2008
"Modern" and "new" were the bywords for Jeff Halmos and Sam Shipley's Spring collection, shown this season at a West Chelsea venue with a century-old restored-wood interior. To pierce that air of antiquity, the duo installed a spray of fluorescent tube lights as a backdropaimed, naturally, at injecting some of that electric current into their clothes. But aside from the designers' stated guiding principle of looks that could slip seamlessly from day to night with a platform shoe here and a bauble there, it was difficult to pull out an exact direction that these clothes were headed in. Amid the wide style swingsfrom retro lady-land with Katharine Hepburn-esque trousers to tough-chic hipsterville in skinny silver pants and a draped-back black tankthere were a few stronger pieces, such as a nautical rope-motif cardigan or the caped trench that opened the show. Shipley and Halmos are clearly having fun with fashion and their many collaborators/friends in New York. It would be nice to see some of that life and personality in their clothes.