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April 17 2014

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Band Of Outsiders Stages Scavenger Hunt For NYFW

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The runways are already being laid for New York fashion week, which begins next week. But not for Band of Outsiders. Instead of a traditional runway show, the menswear label is staging a scavenger hunt. Two models—Matt Hitt and Miles Garber—will be pitted against each other while the Band team, led by creative director Scott Sternberg, oversees the proceedings from a see-through truck that follows them around the city. The full collection travels with Mission Command, and after each clue is discovered, the models repair to the truck to change outfits and take a picture for the Fall lookbook. The full rules are online at BandofOutsiders.com, where, come Thursday, February 7, the twelve-hour scavenger hunt will also be live-streaming. (You’ll be able to have a look on Style.com, too.)

“The minutiae of what we’re dealing with is hilarious,” Sternberg said from L.A., where he’s putting the finishing touches on the plan before heading east. But the game, which builds off last season’s live-from-the-art-gallery-window installation, felt like a better fit than the catwalk. “Listen, the runway show is the easiest thing to do,” he said. “With womenswear, it works quite well. With men’s, it works against you, because the pieces that are so classic and covetable become exaggerated and ridiculous—or you have a really boring show.”

The word is already spreading, thanks to a guerrilla poster campaign, “Matt vs. Miles,” that’s already popping up across the city. (On the seventh, the hashtag #mattvsmiles will be another way to follow along, too.) The hunt culminates with a party at a to-be-disclosed location and bragging rights for the victor—and will be followed two days later by a runway show for the company’s womenswear. Is a show and a scavenger hunt in seventy-two hours a tall order? In a word, yes. But the challenge—especially the logistical challenge of a citywide live game—appeals to the designer. Every time planning for the women’s show hit a routine snag, Sternberg said with the laugh, “it was like, ‘Let’s move back to the scavenger hunt, I’m bored.’ ”

Photo: Courtesy of Band of Outsiders

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