Matthew Edelstein called in a lot of chips to launch Mr.Matthew.
The stylist and fashion editor, whose résumé includes Details and W magazines, introduced his men’s color-blocked T-shirt collection in an unusual way on Tuesday — on Instagram.
He set up shop at a studio in East Williamsburg, Brooklyn, and, with the help of casting director John Tan, put out a casting call to emerging and in-demand models. They arrived at the space in force, drawn by the relationship as well as the lure of free pizza and beer. Edelstein outfitted them in the T-shirts, photographed them and immediately posted the images on Instagram.
“Models love Instagram and Instagram loves models,” he said.
He encouraged the men, including Brodie Scott of Wilhelmina; Trevor Feehan, Richard Detwiler, Ilir Shanja and Luke Gernert of Citizen, and Michael Bailey-Gates of Major, to “regram” their photos and Tweet about the line as well.
They were shot by Sophie Elgort, daughter of Vogue lensman Arthur Elgort and sister of actor Ansel Elgort, styled by David Vandewal and groomed by David von Cannon.
By Wednesday morning, Edelstein had 167 followers on Instagram and had even gotten a call from a couple of large retailers who had seen some of the posts.
The T-shirts are clean, colorful and sporty. “I’m superinspired by the clothes I wear to the gym,” he said. They retail for $88 to $98 and are available in six styles — two long sleeve and four short sleeve — in five colors per style. They’re being sold through mr-matthew.com. “I’m doing everything myself,” Edelstein said. “It’s supertight, but I think it has potential.”
Although the men’s line is new, Edelstein is not a novice at being entrepreneurial. He had designed a women’s collection called Friends & Associates that was shuttered this year, and is also credited with launching the online magazine Contributing Editor in 2008.
“The business wasn’t sustainable,” he said of Friends & Associates, “but it was a great learning experience. Now I’m applying the lessons I learned there to this new venture.”