GQ named Billy Reid the best new menswear designer in America this afternoon.
The magazine's editor-in-chief Jim Nelson, Calvin Klein men’s designer Italo Zucchelli, and a few other industry leaders picked Reid from a pool of six finalists whose looks span the sartorial spectrum from collegiate prepster to urban lumberjack. Reid gets a decent $50,000 in cash for his efforts, plus a mentor at the mag and the chance to design some jeans for Bloomingdales. Reid's interview with GQ is here.
This isn’t Reid’s first honor in the New York fashion arena. He won the CFDA’s Best New Menswear Designer award in 2001 under the label William Reid, but when business went south in the wake of September 11, he closed up shop, moved back to Alabama, started Billy Reid from home in 2004, stayed in touch with his Seventh Avenue contacts and now boasts a flagship in downtown Manhattan that struggles to keep $150 Farmstead shirts on its shelves.
At last night’s award showcase in Chelsea, fellow nominees Doug and Ben Burkman, Richard Chai, Vincent Flumiani, Eunice Lee, and J.Crew menswear designer Frank Muytjens displayed their clothes on almost 30 models, including a few recognizable faces from the J.Crew catalog. DvF breezed in to the airy IAC building and laughed, "Welcome to my building!"
Meanwhile, post-preview, we can't wait to see what Richard Chai shows on his men's runway and Billy presents on Sunday. Stay tuned!