Last night everyone who is anyone in fashion–from Anna Wintour to Steven Kolb to Mickey Drexler to models and designers galore–packed the J.Crew Men’s shop on Fifth Ave. to celebrate CFDA winner Billy Reid and runners up Prabal Gurung and Eddie Borgo, all of whom designed capsule collections for the mass retailer. The party theme reflected Reid’s southern heritage–”Sweet Home Alabama” played over the chatter, biscuits and fried chicken were passed around, and spiked sweet tea was served in mason jars.
Even though it’s been months since Reid won the prestigious fashion award back in November, the humble designer still has trouble believing it happened.
“Everyday it’s totally surreal,” he told us. “It’s just one of those things you never expect. You’re making clothes and trying to run a business and you never think about this side of it.”
Reid has designed a seven-piece capsule collection for J.Crew which is available online now through May. Gurung and Borgo have also designed collections, which will be available in June and July respectively.
As for the process of designing at a lower price point and aligning with J.Crew’s aesthetic, Reid says he felt the partnership was seamless. Here’s how it happened: “Prabal, Eddie and I met with J.Crewc together,” Reid explained. “What they wanted us to do was present to them signature items from our collections that might make sense for J.Crew. Then we took those pieces that they could go out and manufacture for us.” For Reid that meant a tailored suit in chambray, woven button downs, and a cardigan. For Gurung, it was a take on his tuxedo pants with ankle ties.
So boys, get yourselves to J.Crew stat, while we wait patiently for Gurung and Borgo’s collections to become available.
**Photo: Hannah Thomson for J.Crew