NAHM Fall 2012: Ancient Egypt Meets the 1920s
The room was already buzzing when we arrived at the NAHM presentation. Piano music swelled in the background as we navigated past press, bloggers, and assorted fashion folk to get a good look at the fall collection. You could hear people gushing in conversation: “It's gorgeous,” “so wearable,” “I need those shoes exactly right now.” It’s hard to believe that it was only a year ago that Alexandra Hilfiger (yes, that Hilfiger) and Nary Manivong showed their debut collection, consisting mostly of shirtdresses highlighted with feminine detailing. But oh, how the brand has grown in that time.
NAHM Spring 2012: Belle du Jour
If there was ever a case for opposites attracting, it's NAHM. For their sophomore collection, designers Ally Hilfiger and Nary Manivong produced an intricately crafted line--again, based upon their shirtdress foundation--that ran the gamut from floaty delicate cotton shifts to woven silk cocoon dresses that. The inspiration was Belle du Jour and the Parisian ex-pats who traveled to Laos in the '70s, which Manivong and Hilfiger explored through four themes: repression, exploration, freedom and rebellion. It's interesting to note how the different techniques of the two designers meshed. Nary's Laotian-American roots are evident in the traditional Laotian prints used in silk drop-waist and bell-sleeved dresses while the wispy white cotton frocks clearly bear Hilfiger's feminine touch. Though these looks might seem contradictory, the close attention to detailing creates common threads: each shirtdress and button-down is restrained by a sharp triangular collar while those with more of a T-shirt cut bear large bows. The result is a girly yet louche style that will be a definite hit among the younger urban set.
Last Night's Party: NAHM's Debut is Even Cooler Than Its Hilfiger Genes
Nary Manivong made waves a few seasons back for his jump from relative obscurity (and, uh, homelessness) into the heart of fashion darlings. Among the converted fans was designer Tommy Hilfiger's daughter, Ally Hilfiger, who met Manivong in 2008 after the show for his eponymous line. The two became fast friends, and Hilfiger started styling for the new brand. It wasn't long before Hilfiger's recessive fashion gene kicked in, and after two seasons the two fell into a styling-cum-design partnership, with the eventual result being a joint collection: NAHM, an it-girl-cool line influenced by Poe's "The Raven" and centered around the classic shirt dress. The pair presented their line last night at West Village boutique A Man and a Woman to a host of friends and fashion insiders, with musical accompaniment by DJ Chelsea Leyland and champers by Nicolas Feuillatte. Raised platforms in the center of the space showcased the sheer asymmetrical button-downs and burnt-sienna dresses that fell like water off the mannequins.