The Label: Haus Alkire
Based In: New York City
Designed By: Husband-and-wife team Julie Haus and Jason Alkire. She designs the clothes, he designs the prints, though it's a true team effort. "We are together nearly every moment of the day and night," the duo told TFI. "Thus, when creativity hits one of us the other is within shouting distance. We truly collaborate on each garment. Julie is the detail and construction perfectionist. Jason is the color, print and texture leader. But we swap roles constantly." Prior to joining forces in 2010, Haus had a namesake handbag and ready-to-wear collection and Alkire was an advertising exec/photographer/creative director at the Time Warner luxury magazine, Spoon (where his wife, who studied journalism at the University of Houston, was editor-in-chief before making the switch to fashion). "We wanted to put our two passions—fine art and fashion design—into one designer collection," said Alkire. "We really feel we are exploring how to merge a painting or other forms of fine art into something that's emotional and all-the-while wearable." In February 2012, the designing duo's unique brand of wearable art nabbed them both the Ecco Domani Fashion Foundation prize and a spot on the W Hotel Fashion Next roster at The Box.
Looks Like: Dreamy and evocative digital prints give flight to draped dresses, fitted skirts and textured jackets, which are toughened up by razor-sharp trousers and boxy fur vests. "For autumn/winter 2012, we started with Luo Jie paintings and included an ode to the movie The Belle Starr Story," explained Haus. "But we don't literally translate our inspiration to garments—subtlety is key." Subtle being an apt way to describe this forward-thinking collection, which walks the very fine line between edgy and elegant. "The interior of the garment is as carefully constructed as the exterior, and most of the garments are partly constructed by hand," said Haus. And all of it's made in Manhattan. Next up: a possible expansion into handbags and shoes, and a collaboration with W Hotels worldwide through the Fashion Next program.
Sold At: Haus Alkire retails for $1,000 to $3,000 and is carried at their store on Broome Street in Soho. The fall 2012 collection will be available at Louis Boston and the Designer Boutique on Shopbop beginning in August.