the up and comers: barlow

this is our first season with los-angeles based barlow and it’s been a really strong one so far. inspired by varying dichotomies such as tomboy/vixen, his/hers, and avant-garde/traditional, amonst others – the collection is a strong and sexy group of dresses, outerwear, and separates. we’re obsessed with the maroon velvet power dress and it doesn’t seem that we’re the only ones who are. we had a chance to ask the designers behind the line a few questions recently – read below to get to know barlow and check out a few pics from their studio.

OAK: can you briefly introduce yourselves?
Barlow: Molly Girard Coonan-designer/Alice Barlow-muse

OAK:what is the concept of your brand and why did you start it?
B: Barlow is about the dichotomy between a tomboy and a sexy girl, basically that’s how I like to dress and the style that inspires me in other people. We are really into utilitarian clothing: hunting, fishing, camping, army, sport, and like to incorporate elements of those things into our designs. The goal for Barlow is to create edgier, forward silhouettes that are still functional and completely wearable.

OAK: what, or when, was your first big break?
B: We are lucky because we have had a great response to the collection since its inception, but what really is exciting for us is to be in stores like OAK that inspire us and motivate us to keep pushing our boundaries creatively.

OAK: what’s your favorite piece from the line that we’re carrying? do you have any styling tips for that piece or others in the collection, for our readers?
B: I love the velvet zipper dress , it can be worn as a sexy dress alone, or styled as a vest layered with an amazing t-shirt and leather pants.

OAK: what are the challenges faced by up and coming designers in los angeles? does being in l.a. influence the direction of your line?
B: The challenge for all designers, not just LA based, is finding relevancy in such a competitive market. There is so much talent out there that I think you really have to maintain your point of view and stay consistent in order to establish any kind of longevity. LA influences us in the sense that we definitely have a California lifestyle, we’re super casual but still like to be edgy, so we wear and design clothes that reflect that. Its all about the balance between casual and fancy, everything should translate both ways.

OAK: what’s next for you two and the brand?
B: We want to work on further developing our group of novelty sweaters, I think its something we do well and a part of the collection we would love to expand. Our Barlowsaurus Tee’s are also something we would like to continue, they are simple graphic tee’s that represent a visual of the inspiration for each delivery. Also, we would love to do a small mens capsule next spring, Barlow for boys!

OAK: anything else you’d like to say?
B: We love OAK and are really proud to be represented in your store alongside so many other great brands, keep up with the amazing, forward thinking aesthetic!!

click here to shop barlow.

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broaklyn in the cut

the simpsons by banksy