Existing along side the mega brands in our industry exists a subculture of small, independent minded entrepreneurs who carry on season after season creating collections, capsules, even garment by garment, without a single concern for what the balance of the market is doing. New York State designer Samantha Pleet is just such a brand. Her late Summer collection that released on August 13th, 2021 is entitled Wanderlust 21 & features a range of pieces from swim to dresses to rompers & pants.
From her studio in Chatham, New York, Samantha & her partner Patrick create a collection under the designer’s name that at first glance is simple to the point of being artsy-craftsy in feel, but upon closer inspection & applying the lens of fashion history, channels a sophistication that is found in the great house of Schiaparelli in her hey day. Others may find some of the designers’ pieces more inspired by the works of the artist Marcel Duchamp or de Chirico who were masters of the Dada end of the Surrealist movement.
My inspiration comes from films like Daisies & Valerie & Her Week of Wonders, stories of magical women who do not want to grow up in the traditional world. I love to produce my own films & photoshoots in collaboration with inspiring artists, activists, & creative people.Samantha Pleet
Manufactured in small lot artisanal factories in India, where the designer herself travels yearly to work along side the confection team & source her fabrics & techniques in the local market. The result is a collection that is unlike any other in the market. Feeling simultaneously vintage & artfully modern, Samantha Pleet is a collection the deserves a look beyond the cursory.
The photo-real floral all-over printed are especially rich & eye catching & are best in hte swimwear & sundresses. The blouse & romper that incorporate an embroidered window on the chest panel are also true standouts as they evoke a feeling of a surrealist look into the heart & soul of the wearer.
Collections like Samantha Pleet, delivering unique, vintage in feel, small lot creations that deliver in season or at times whenever they want, are a growing, underground phenomenon. For those who are interested in supporting local, yet to be widely discovered talent, Samantha Pleet is a designer you may want to seek out & support.
- PQ Buckingham