Monday, August 23, 2010


(NEW YORK) What would a men's fashion line, designed by the "Page Six" staple Jean "Johnny" Pigozzi look like? Silk pajamas? Smoking jackets? Opera pumps?

Although Pigozzi describes his menswear line as "clothing for rich old men," we noticed he can't seem to help himself but design youthful, hip and forward-thinking sportswear worthy of Rei Kawakubo or Yohji Yamamoto.

Pigozzi's design empire, LimoLand, has just established its US flagship with an energetic but straight-shooting menswear shop in Manhattan's Meat Packing District.

Pigozzi, who describes himself as a venture capitalist, philanthropist and environmental activist, pulls the rug out from under his earnestly-sewn counterparts on Washington Street, debuting LimoLand's in an unobtrusive but well-appointed space near such skinny-jean Meccas as Helmut Lang and Paige Premium Denim.

LimoLand's aesthetic, riffing on subcultures as diverse as hip-hop, Manga and, according to Interview, "Caddyshack", delivers a much-needed jolt of youthfulness and spontanaeity amidst NYC's overly precious and couture-y menswear scene.

While Pigozzi incorporates international pop-culture tropes, busy patterns and a bold palette into his menswear line, LimoLand is no mere KidRobot clone. Many individual pieces are classic wardrobe staples, tweaked with subtle innovations like florescent lining or retro top-stitching.
Outerwear and accessories, in particular, reflect Pignozzi's unique aesthetic: classic, utilitarian silhouettes, tweaked with just a touch of anarchy. Pignozzi has collaborated with venerable institutions like Crescent Down, Yoshida-Porter, and Penfield to yield some classic pieces.

Prices are pretty reasonable, relatively speaking: two-in-one jackets (reversible and/or with removable liners which can be worn as separate jackets) run anywhere from $250 to $380, and shirts go for, at most, around $150-$160. If that sounds high, bargains do abound throughout the store, and if one chooses to spend $35 instead of $300, one will still come away with something pretty unique. For about the same price you'd pay for a generic camel-hair top coat from J. Crew, or Burlington Coat Factory, for that matter, one can get truly unique limited-edition items that will become lifelong wardrobe staples.

One standout, LimoLand's sober but energetic CANVAS TOTE, created in collaboration with the Japanese accessories company Yoshida Porter, is a masterpiece of utilitarian design, but rendered in kelly green canvas with neon yellow waterproof lining.