On February 4th we were fortunate to sneak a preview at the new Shipley & Halmos fall 2010 collection. Reserving a late morning slot, it was unclear what the “press preview” would entail: A couple of models showcasing their upcoming designs to music, perhaps? A slide show to hip, runway beats? An opportunity to interrogate and document statements made by Shipley & Halmos? None of these considerations matched the reality endued, as we, greeted by a stylish door girl and a yapping puppy, ascended down a steep staircase into the extremely bright, loft studio space. Densely equipped with artful collages, paintings, computers, hanging light sculptures and wild, modern furniture, the designer’s publicist, Megan Maguire Steele welcomed us into the highly intimate and vacated preview zone.
Men’s and women’s collections, carefully arranged onto four separate racks- two for each gender- delightfully met our eyes, incited our basest tactile urges, and outpoured the inquiries. When asked what distinguished the particular designs from the designer’ previous collections, Megan represented Shipley & Halmos as a designer brand did not wish to drastically introduce new pieces, styles, or motifs according to the conventionally prescribed “season” or ‘yearly’ trend.
They were, rather a company that lay new bricks atop the old—they did not seek destruction of the precedent in attempt to electrify the public. Reinterpreting the asymmetric leather zip vest for instance or experimenting with oversized silhouettes in dress form, Shipley & Halmos prefer subtle recreations of the classical to drastically detouring from their foundation. They introduce new flares, shades and flavors without much exclaim; striving not to revolutionize their modest, casual designs for definition’s sake, Shipley & Halmos’ progress is a liquid movement from the old into the new.