David Hart has arrived. His inaugural men’s Fall 2013 collection is rich in bold colors, plaids and multi-checks with opulent fabric choices including mohair jackets, trousers and tuxedos, alongside merino turtlenecks and wool topcoats. It is all about the new! And finding the new in the “old.” Fresh. And fun.
Loved the accents of silk Donegal stripe ties and Shantung stripe ties, silk satin cummerbunds and bowties, as well as signature cotton pocket squares. Not to mention the silk braces and the pan-ultimate wool 3-piece suit in gun check.
The show was a blast. Twenty model agents took the stage. Like out of a spy novel. Retro. Hipster. A throwback to the 1920s and 1930s, when 30-year-old David Hart’s grandfather thrived in his fashion day. Influenced by his grandfather’s sensibilities, David now embraces the underlying tension of that historic landscape as well as the 1950s and 1960s cold war era in his new men’s line, bringing it to the forefront in the coolest of cool presentations accompanied by Henry Mancini music fitting the choreography to a tee.
The production design was an ode to one of David Hart’s favorite television series - Man from U.N.C.L.E. – and agents, spies, guns, and men were prevalent. Sunglasses and angora felt hats in tow. This early espionage theme galvanizes David’s target customer as a young professional in his late 20s “looking back at his grandfather and older generations who were really dressing up.”
David Hart also looked back at mohair, “which fell out of fashion but really feels new again.” David Hart is working with Harris Tweed, based on Harris Island off the coast of Scotland, as well as with Molloy & Sons, in Donegal County, Ireland. Authentic as it gets.
David Hart’s clean line is handcrafted down to the finest detail. Perfection. His experience as a connoisseur of men’s accessories pervades his sensibilities. Each outfit is fitted with the utmost care. It felt like looking at a movie set backstage with prevailing neutral tones accented with splashes of bright colors, as if the colors themselves were accessories. David Hart & Co. men’s accessories of neckties and socks sold internationally in renowned retailers such as Bergdorf Goodman (his first account), Saks Fifth Avenue, Bloomingdale’s, Nordstorm, and United Arrows, Japan. After graduating from the Fashion Institute of Technology, David worked alongside Tommy Hilfiger, Anna Sui, and Ralph Lauren prior to launching his own collection.
David Hart’s team is 100% behind him. Everyone gave their all to showcase his talent and keep it center stage at NYC Fashion Week. The production was a full collaboration and the results proved it all. Jahn Hall handled styling, casting, and production. And it turns out that David Hart and Jahn Hall live in the same building in Brooklyn, a renovated chocolate factory where the old meets the new. Lofts galore. And perfect for late-night teamwork.
Publicist extraordinaire Jae Joseph took command of the show’s media in the most professional, courteous manner with full creative consideration. Asking Jae what he would constitute as a success at NYC Fashion Week, he warmly responded that it would hit the mark if David Hart had a smile on his face following the show. For the record, he did.
The production kept a humorous undertone throughout by positioning the model agents in very serious stances and nailed that fine line between camp and art. It worked. Bravo. The runway show was followed by a presentation of all twenty agents in an installation-type holding pattern where the audience was invited to get close up and personal. It felt as though you were in an art museum…which, in fact, you were!
The show’s location lent itself to the spy theme. The New Museum on the Bowery is that perfect combination of new surrounded by old. The newest, hippest setting a-la-warehouse vibe, the structure is surrounded by the older Bowery neighborhood outside. Walking down the street, you have the feeling you have to look back over your shoulder, as if you are inside a time warp from a begotten era. Fast forward to February 7, 2013. Up in the 7th floor sky lounge with a gothic landscape backdrop on a fog-filled wintry afternoon, David Hart made his inaugural debut. No looking back now.
For more information, go to the David Hart website
Photos by Jodi Kaplan