Style.com
Subscribe to Style Magazine
10 posts tagged "Palmer/Harding"

Palmer//Harding: Beyond the Shirt

-------

Levi Palmer and Matthew Harding launched Palmer//Harding four seasons ago as a line that strictly offered shirts. Since, the London-based Central Saint Martins graduates have won NEWGEN sponsorship (they presented on schedule at London fashion week for the first time this season) and their constantly evolving range has been picked up by high-profile retailers like Dover Street Market, Fivestory, Louis Boston, and Moda Operandi. Looking at their Fall '13, it’s not hard to see why. The collection—their most comprehensive to date—features clean, voluminous blouses with long, sometimes floor-length trains, sculpted skirts, and shapely jackets in adventurous textiles (the most exciting of which was a “tarred” wool that Harding likened to antique leather or a “sticky cinema floor”), and sharp black trousers.

In case there was any doubt, the designers have made it clear that they can do more than just shirts. Heck, even the shirts are more than just shirts. One cotton poplin oxford looks simple from the front and then, surprise!, it’s backless. Some styles came with intricate embellishments on the sleeves, collar, or waist, and other silk/cotton voile versions incorporated gentle pleating to achieve a fluid femininity. “There are 15 different shirts in the collection. The shirt is still the star,” said Palmer. Harding added, “We just wanted to show people more of our mood, and our world, and we needed the separates to push that.”

Photo: Courtesy of Palmer//Harding; Set design by Thomas Bird

Milan Puts Young Talent In The Corner

-------

Milan may be known for fashion powerhouses like Prada, Gucci, and Versace, but it seems the city has room for the little guy, too. Since 2011, YOOX Group’s luxury e-boutique, Thecorner.com, and Vogue Italia have been supporting emerging talents through their initiative The Vogue Talents Corner—a project that both highlights up-and-coming designers with an exhibition during Milan fashion week, and helps them build a retail presence by offering their wares on the shopping site. This year, the initiative champions eleven young ready-to-wear and accessories brands from across the globe, like Palmer//Harding (a shirt-centric range by Levi Palmer and Matthew Harding), Kristy Ward (necklace pictured left), Kzeniya (an accessories line by Kzeniya Oudenot, clutch pictured left) Vs2R (a footwear label by Vincenzo Somarrelli, pictured left) and J JS Lee (a ready-to-wear line by Jackie Lee, top pictured left). Each brand will showcase its Fall ’13 collection in an installation at the Palazzo Morando, which opens tonight. “For the most part, it’s instinct. And sometimes it’s simply what we like!” said Yoox.com founder and CEO Federico Marchetti when asked about the selection process. Marchetti explained that he looks for designers who exemplify creativity and innovation, and that this year he was particularly impressed by the group’s focus on craftsmanship and “excellent” materials. Looks from the eleven selected designers’ Spring ’13 collections will be available from today, on www.thecorner.com.

Brit Designers Take New York

-------

Twenty-four designers, including Thomas Tait (pictured), J. JS Lee, and Palmer//Harding’s Levi Palmer and Matthew Harding, are in New York today as part of London Show Rooms’ 48-hour showcase to attract more interest in U.K. labels and bring attention to the debut of London Collections: Men (June 15 to 17). The inaugural men’s program will officially launch with a reception at St. James’s Palace hosted by the Prince of Wales.

Tait, the young designer who took home the Dorchester Collection Fashion Prize award in 2010, has been steadily increasing his U.S. presence ever since. Most recently, the Canadian-born designer reports, he collaborated with pro skateboarder Keith Hufnagel, creating a collection of limited-edition baseball hats for his Huf line, in addition to teaming up with Cutler & Gross on a capsule collection and consulting for a major U.S. brand (a name he can’t yet reveal).

Photo: Mark Von Holden / Getty Images

Young London Calling: Palmer//Harding

-------

London is a hotbed of young talent in fashion, and the city is known for supporting the young, the wild, and the penniless like few other fashion capitals. Just in time for London fashion week, Style.com checked in with three of the city’s most exciting emerging designers. Today, meet Levi Palmer and Matthew Harding, the duo behind Palmer//Harding.

Considering London’s young designers are known for their conceptual, if not eccentric edge, it took a lot of guts for newcomers Levi Palmer, 30, and Matthew Harding, 26, to launch something as simple as a shirt line. But the savvy design duo, nominated for this year’s ANDAM Award, didn’t want to rush into things. “I think shirts are a neglected garment,” Harding tells Style.com. “We eventually want to do a full line, but this allows us to take it sensibly and slowly.”

For their debut at London fashion week, with the support of NEWGEN, the Central Saint Martins-trained designers pulled inspiration from the youthful naïveté found in Ingar Krauss’ photographs of juvenile delinquents for their 17 men’s shirts and 17 women’s shirts. “There was a loneliness in her photography that was really beautiful,” says Palmer. Harding adds, “We also looked at thirties couture references, so it’s kind of naïveté mixed with sophistication.”

As one might deduct from the designers’ influences, an ordinary shirt brand this is not. The gray, white, and dusty mint collection features a mix of organic spiral details as well as tight accordion pleats. Rubberized metal accents on pockets and cuffs and grosgrain detailing enhance the handcrafted feel of their wearable works. But the Egyptian cotton shirts aren’t too precious because, as Harding explains, “the shirts are special, quality pieces but we want them to be lived in as well.”

Photos: Lucy Carr-Ellison

In Paris, A Varied Crowd Vies For The ANDAM

-------

Paris Vogue‘s Emmanuelle Alt, Colette’s Sarah Lerfel, Opening Ceremony’s Humberto Leon, and other fashion insiders—myself included—gathered at the Ritz in blazing-hot Paris today to cast our votes for this year’s ANDAM Fashion Award winner. Last year, the €200,000 prize went to Hakaan Yildirim. This year, Adam Kimmel, Anthony Vaccarello, Commuun, Jeremy Laing, Palmer/Harding, and Yiqing Yin are in the running. (Yin was also up for the newly launched Young Fashion Designer Prize, alongside Calla Haynes and Barnabe Hardy.) I can’t reveal who won until tomorrow night when it will be announced at the French Ministry of Culture, but I can tell you how different the presentations were.

Kimmel, fresh off his “dark surfing” Spring 2012 men’s runway show, said he hates public speaking, then spoke off the cuff and at length. The most interesting tidbit: “For many seasons now, it’s been a dream for me to do womenswear,” he told us. (He designed wife Leelee Sobieski’s suit for the CFDA Awards, left.) Vaccarello, a shy Belgian, barely opened his mouth at all, preferring to let his three prototypes for next season do the talking. Commuun’s Iku Furudate and Kaito Hori tag-teamed, sharing such inspirations for their upcoming show as late fifties cinema, natural graphics, and Japanese architecture. Laing read from well-prepared notes, citing influences from Kawakubo and Yamamoto to Cristobal Balenciaga and Madeleine Vionnet to McQueen, for whom he freelanced for four seasons. Palmer/Harding’s Levi Palmer and Matthew Harding, among the least well-known of the bunch, introduced us to their shirting concept. And Yin gave a sneak preview of her haute couture show next week. She’ll be working extra hard between now and then: She lost one of her three dresses to a scooter tail pipe on the way over. Check back tomorrow for the results.

Photo: Neil Rasmus / BFAnyc.com