Dance and fashion have long inspired one another. Just look at the number of glossy editorials ballet has inspired, or the number of ballets costumed by designers (see: Valentino for the Vienna State Opera, Rodarte for Black Swan). And for choreographer James Browne, whose credits include the Victoria's Secret fashion show, Louis Vuitton, Nike, Tommy Hilfiger and Rachel Roy's gorgeous video look book for her spring Rachel Rachel Roy collection, fashion and dance are inextricably intertwined. So creating a high fashion dancewear line was the logical thing to do.
"There's nothing out there really for someone like me who likes fashion and is also looking for dancewear to dance, be comfortable, and look fashionable in, and then run from a rehearsal into a quick meeting," Brown said. "I've always had this idea of trying to find dance clothes that can be worn in the studio or onstage and out to dinner."
In collaboration with designer Dominic Louis, Browne has created a 12-piece capsule collection that is comprised of harem pants, unitards, and leggings, in stretch jerseys and French cotton ribs, all of which could easily be translated into everyday wear. The pieces are designed with a unique functionality, keeping a dancer's um, personal needs in mind. Consider Browne's men's unitard: "Usually for men in a leotard, they have to totally unzip and pull it off to go to the bathroom," Browne said. "But this is structured in a way where the bottom is almost like underwear. You don't have to go through that whole reveal when you go to the bathroom." How convenient.
And since Browne has choreographed the last four Victoria's Secret fashion shows, we had to ask: Can the models dance? "Candice, who opened up the show, she's a trained ballerina, actually, she's a really cool dancer," Brown said, laughing. "All the girls, if you see them during the show and the footage behind the scenes, they're always rocking to the beat, doing their thing, so they have pretty good rhythm." He would know!