Somewhere between $4/gallon gas and the housing collapse, folks in the fashion world thought: “Balls, people probably won’t be buying as many $500 pairs of jeans this spring, will they?” And, retail geniuses that they are, they planned ahead. Here are some truly brilliant lines on the truly cheap to look forward to being able to afford.
Rogan for Target (out now)
In April, Target announced that it would partner with CFDA-award-winning Rogan Gregory (the force behind Rogan, Loomstate and EDUN) to create the first organic line for its GO division. (Previous stars include Proenza Schouler, Behnaz Sarafpour and Libertine.) The line epitomizes spring’s easy chic, from a short button-down romper to a super-soft gray t-shirt and a striped vest. Whether or not you believe they’ve trekked across continents to find the top trends, they do cover everything from a Grecian-inspired one-shoulder dress to a fantastic sporty zip-up with neon yellow lining.
H&M Tribute to Marimekko (out now)
On April 10, H&M launched a kind of ingenious line of 60s-ish vibrant prints. Granted, some of them border on the shower curtain look (black and orange graphic pants? Yeesh), but there are some really great stand-outs: a retro-looking swimsuit in crisp black, white and red, and a long, flowing pink-and-orange printed skirt. I mean, pink and orange? Who knew? As an added bonus, stay tuned for news of H&M’s much-touted collaboration with Comme des Garçons, launching in November.
Alexander Wang for Uniqlo (out May 30)
God, you can practically hear the teeming masses, can’t you? Fashion editors and tweenage hipsters alike will no doubt be camping outside the Soho Uniqlo store to get their hands on Wang’s signature black-and-white racer-back and tank dresses and a great, swingy, drop-waist-esque number that you could wear right into fall. Given his current over-the-top price point, it might be the only way to afford one of Wang’s spring pieces this year in general.
Gap Design Editions (out now)
Enlisting not one, not two, not even three or four, but five CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund finalists, Gap offered a challenge: design a limited-edition collection inspired by the ultimate wardrobe essential — a classic white shirt. Phillip Lim concocted an effortlessly feminine tie-neck top, ThreeAsFour offered a tank-style cut-out dress, Band of Outsiders whipped up a crisp patchwork shirt, Michael Bastian made some Western styles, and Philip Crangie, er, made jewelry. But it’s good-lookin’. And I respect any attempt to bring a certain Audrey Hepburn aesthetic to these fashion-meets-retail endeavors.