4 posts tagged "Lyz Olko"
Lyz Olko has a lot on her plate at any given moment. In addition to running her cult downtown label Obesity + Speed, Olko doubles as the social director of both The Jane Hotel and The Westway, and clocks just four hours of sleep each night. That’s a lot of blood, sweat, and cheers, but it’s paid off for the designer, who described the latest Spring lineup as her “most elevated yet.” Over the past eight years, O+S has become known for its punky, goth-tinged aesthetic and best-selling destroyed T-shirts, which Olko individually shreds in her Lower East Side apartment. (“My fingers are bleeding because I had to destroy 100 of them last night,” she said at a preview earlier this week.) Olko switched things up a bit this season, and traded out her typically dark stuff for clothes that had more street appeal, citing early-nineties hip-hop as an influence. “It’s a lot more positive and bright, with no boundaries,” she told Style.com. “This collection is about working hard, kicking butt, and striving to do better.”
Her positive outlook was evident in a range of novelty tees emblazoned with phrases like “Love Without Limits,” “Do You Ever Dream of Candy Coated Rain Drops,” and “The Hustle Never Dies.” In addition to rolling out those trendy, made-for-hashtag pieces
Obesity + Speed is currently sold in New York at Barneys, American Two Shot, and Oak. For more information, visit obesityandspeed.com.
Somewhere between psychedelic, street, and old-school grunge lies High Priestess, a collaborative limited-edition capsule from Lindsey Thornburg (a bohemian New York designer known for her sumptuous cloaks) and streetwear label Obesity and Speed’s Lyz Olko. “We’ve known each other a really really long time,” said Olko about her partner in sartorial crime, adding that it dawned upon them to collaborate while sitting around a bonfire at a friend’s wedding in Santa Barbara earlier this year. “We have really similar aesthetics and this was the perfect merging of our styles. I guess she’s a little more ‘witchy’ and I’m a little more ‘urban street,’ but together, it really works.”
The resulting range comprises hand-shredded denim shorts and jackets, destroyed T-shirts and tanks, printed “Don’t Exist” tops that have been dipped in water so the lettering runs (one of Olko’s favorites), and a raw silk bomber jacket with “High Priestess” embroidered across the back. “We just thought it made sense,” explained Olko when asked about the title. “It’s definitely kind of trippy, but at the same time, it’s super feminine and regal.”
And who better to represent this gritty queen than Starred’s front woman (and Hedi Slimane muse-cum-campaign face) Liza Thorn? “Her voice is like a saint’s, and she’s hypnotic in a way—her personality and her music really suit the capsule, and she’s super seventies hippie rock ‘n’ roll,” said Olko, who met the musician a while back through her pal, the Misshapes’ Greg Krelenstein. “Since we were already friends, I called her up and told her that she’d be perfect for this collaboration and she was like, ‘I’m so down,’” recalled Olko. “And then she said, ‘Actually, randomly, I just shot this Saint Laurent thing for Hedi [Slimane], too.’ And I was like whoa, that’s crazy! That’s a big deal. That’s like, huge.”
The girls didn’t let it go to their heads, though. According to Olko, the shoot, which was lensed by her old friend Jason Nocito, was laid-back, and largely styled by Thorn. “Nothing was pre-planned. We all just hung out in the dressing room and it worked out beautifully,” said Olko. The images debut exclusively here. As for the collection (priced between $70 and $395 and hitting stores like OAK, bonadrag.com, and American Two Shot, as well as obesityandspeed.com and lindseythornburg.com, the first week of September), Olko offered, “This is one of my favorite things that I’ve done so far. And I hope people get that there’s a story behind everything that we made. It’s not just a T-shirt. It’s more than that.”
Having sworn that I would never again write the words “pop-up shop” in an article for this Web site, I’m struggling for a new vocabulary to describe the Obesity and Speed “— — —-” that opens tomorrow at the Earnest Sewn store in the Meatpacking District. An installation of limited-edition Obesity and Speed product? A temporary backroom boutique featuring graphic tote bags, T-shirts, dresses, and Earnest Sewn denim customized by Obesity and Speed founders Lyz Olko and Josh Connor? A merchandised mélange…Screw it. If you want to get your hands on some Obesity and Speed stuff, the Earnest Sewn store is the place to do it, at least until September. Keep an eye out for that denim: Olko and Connor have screened a signature cross print onto pairs of Earnest Sewns in black, white, and gray, and hand-studded, patched, and distressed them, to boot. These will run you a cool $295, but as Olko notes, each pair of jeans will be 100 percent unique. “They’re all handmade, so they’re all different,” explains Olko between ringing up customers at the Earnest Sewn store where, not so coincidentally, she day-jobs. Not that that’s the only reason why Olko’s brand has moved into Earnest Sewn’s backroom real estate. “They carry Obesity and Speed at both Earnest Sewn stores,” she points out, “and we’ve been talking about doing a back room for a while. And we’ve also been talking about doing a denim collaboration, so it seemed to make sense to do it all at the same time.” Just don’t call it a “— –.”
Todd Selby launched theselby.com, the addictive, voyeur’s heaven featuring his photographs of creative types and their equally creative homes, just over six months ago and he’s already got the likes of Michael Stipe asking him to shoot their places. “I’ve tapped into a general human instinct, people are always up in everyone else’s business,” Selby says of his new role as the Shelter-torialist. But he keeps tinkering with the mix anyway, adding Q&As with subjects, inviting them to write their own captions, and most recently, collaborating on projects. First up is a concert tee by his friends Lyz Olko and Josh Conner of the streetwear label Obesity and Speed that’s on sale today for $45 on theselby.com. The front reads “I’m Watching You,” and the back features Selby’s eyeball logo, circled by the words “World Tour Obesity and Speed + The Selby.” That’s actually no ironic overstatement, at least not for Selby who has two European shows of his work, one slated to take place in Paris at Colette later this year. More on those soon. For now, enjoy this exclusive peek at his shots of Olko and Conner’s former place. (They moved out of their tiny East Village apartment a few days after their Selby shoot. “We needed a much bigger space,” says Olko, who shares a love of collecting stuff with the rest of the Selby stable.)