"Am I in it?" Kinder Aggugini asks no one in particular as we watch a promotional video for his new Macy's collection. The London-based Aggugini, who has worked for the likes of Vivienne Westwood and Versace, is the first designer to sign up for Impulse, the department store's answer to Target's Go International collections. (Next up is Matthew Williamson, then Karl Lagerfeld.) His appearance in the video is fleeting, but he's there--looking very handsome, wearing a leather jacket.
But tonight isn't about Kinder. Well, not really. It's about his clothes, a mix of dresses, rompers, and jackets all priced at around $100. And while his name might not roll off the tips of most American tongues, Macy's shoppers won't be able to deny the strength of this collection. "Here, no one knows what my name is," Kinder told Fashionista. "I thought, 'What if I created a collection that people buy because they like it?' There's no reason other than because they love the garment and they want to buy it."
It is sort of a novel idea in an age of super brands and celebrity labels. But while there's no hard evidence--as of yet, at least--that Aggugini will accomplish his goal, we're betting the collection will be a hit. The trompe l'oeil dress and play suit will appease any Chanel-loving girl without making her look like a poser, while the dotty dresses and floral frocks flatter women of different ages and sizes. Kinder Aggugini may not be a marquee name, but he's most definitely a marquee-caliber designer.
As for what he'll do if this project does indeed push him into that stratosphere? "I don't think everyone is going to know my name! But it also wouldn't make a difference. I will get a kick out of seeing people buy it and responding to the product. Not my name."
Click through to see looks from the collection, which hits stores February 15.