Anyone who saw Alexander Wang’s recent runway collection knows he’s come a long way since his M.O.D. — that’s model-off-duty — days, when he championed a grungy, tousled, tossed-together look. “It’s that sense of ease and not caring,” he said in 2006, “like walking out of bed with messy hair [and putting on] a dirty pair of sneakers.” And though his fall lineup, rife with rigorously reconstructed tailoring, is chapters away from that undone mood, Wang hasn’t abandoned that girl just yet.
Enter the fall collection for T, the secondary basics line Wang introduced for spring 2009. What started as a lineup of T-shirts and tanks is now transitioning into a full lifestyle label anchored by that nonchalant street-chic m.o. “As we evolved, I felt like the [main] collection needed to have more of a point of view on the runway,” Wang says. “But I still very much believe in the whole idea of T-shirt dressing. T represents the fluidity and casual aspect of how T-shirts are worn, but will now transcend into different categories.”
This season, T grows to include slouchy wool blazers and skinny pants, denim jackets, leggings with leather piping, zip-up dresses and hooded ponchos, not to mention plenty of knits: sweaters, scarves and beanies. “People loved the beanie hats we did for fall 2008,” says Wang, who plans to keep his two collections in constant dialogue. To wit, T’s new fall range features bras with velvet accents that echo back to the gypsy-inspired chenille and velvet motifs of his runway collection. T is priced at $38 to $107 wholesale, versus the Alexander Wang range of $120 to $350.
“This is about the foundations,” adds Wang, “clothes that people want to wear and live in. Our girl can use the ready-to-wear to sprinkle in the excitement, but these are the core pieces for her wardrobe.”