The Next Big Thing: LPD New York and Conflict of Interest NYC, Spring ’14-------
Everyone knows their Marcs from their Calvins. But as fashion month kicks into gear, we’ll be spotlighting the up-and-coming designers and indie brands whose names you’ll want to remember.
Labels: LPD New York, designed by 22-year-old Benjamin Fainlight, and Conflict of Interest NYC, whose designers are not yet ready to expose themselves and thus want to be known, for now, as “agents.” The collections were presented in tandem at an installation-cum-party in New York’s Garment District.
Need to Know: Let’s start with LPD (left), a one-year-old label that gained notoriety thanks to its mesh athletic jerseys emblazoned with designer monikers—SLIMANE 68, for example. Yet wisely, the label’s young founder recognizes that a one-trick pony does not a brand make, and, for the first time, will offer a fully cut-and-sewn Spring ’14 lineup that extends well past the gimmickry. On mud-covered models, he showed both men’s and women’s separates, some rendered with eye-catching grayscale landscapes or Japanese lettering. LPD’s inherent street sportiness isn’t sacrificed, though—this was lean, mean, and greased to the concrete bone. In particular, keep a lookout for sweatshirt-material shorts with a leather-mimicking finish, as well as an upcoming collaboration with Jessica Stam.
Conflict of Interest NYC (above), known for riffing on designer labels (yes, they’re responsible for the “Ballinciaga” T-shirts), expanded upon their signatures this season. For Spring, the “agents” offer a men’s cape smattered in playful jabs. Its prints include the words “Chapel,” placed alongside Chanel’s double-c logo outlined with a church; “Benzo,” paired with a caricatured Mercedez in lieu of Kenzo’s tigers; and “Niu Niu York,” written in Miu Miu’s iconic font. Yet they, too, turned out his-and-hers options past the parody, most successfully so via a smart blazer for the gents and an optic white lab coat for the girls.
They Say: Regarding those aforementioned shorts at LPD, Fainlight said: “It’s a Margiela-esque take on things, bringing it down to streetwear level.” And as for Conflict of Interest’s output, an “agent” revealed, “We call it ‘re-psychled’—we take the visual inputs in our minds and remix them. If you notice the back of the shirts, they’ve got graphics from old 1980s technology.”