It wasn't going to be long before designer Sean Monahan of Sea New York hit our radar. He's kind of perfect for the current climate -- a former Wall Street analyst who ditched his career in finance and turned designer. He started out dressing his best friends which quickly turned into dressing Gwyneth Paltrow, Christina Ricci, Leighton Meester, Blake Lively, Chloe Sevigny, and Alexa Chung. He wanted to create clothes that "make girls smile," an ethos that whacks the sometimes unbearably heavy gravitas of fashion across the head. Stocked by Barneys and Milk, his clothes are happy, lighthearted and full of frills, pretty prints and easy to wear dresses so it's no wonder an army of models are also fans. His clothes kind of embody the "off-duty model" look. Meanwhile, he's quietly adding some big names to his design team. Monica Paolini, his best friend, muse and former design director at Betsy Johnson and Jill Stuart, is now on board as well as Emilie Roy of Dior. There could be perhaps no two houses as misaligned as Betsy Johnson and Dior, so it will be interesting to see what the two new creative forces come up with. As long as it stays light and fresh, we're pretty sure we'll love it. --CHARLEY B.
Sea's Cohabitating Designers on Staying Humble and Focusing on the Customer
Sea's Sean Monahan and Monica Paolini live and work together in the same space, making for a round-the-clock working environment that seems to be paying off. It also doesn't hurt that their clothes are very cute.