images / courtesy of Hello Eliza
story / Koko Ntuen
Hello Eliza is the genius clothing line of Eliza Harrison, a shining star with glitter and wit for brains, born and raised in NYC. Hello Eliza is the type of line that a downtown, b-girl from cyberspace or outerspace would be accustomed to. For us mere mortals the line works to bring out that side of fun, glamor and edge that you need in your life. We have come to know and love her line and each collection is a delightful, eyeball titillating experience. Her new Spring/Summer Collection PLAY REWIND is a mix of lots of colors, strong and easy shapes and everything in between. Here the master tells us about the line.
What was the concept for this collection?
A current obsession of mine, 80’s pop. A lot of early video game, music video and technology references with a splash of old school NYC corner store.
What are some physical things that inspired you while working on this collection?
Well, I live right near this kitch little arcade in Portland,OR called Ground Kontrol. I spent a lot of time in there over the winter playing stuff like Alien vs. Predator, Crystal Castles, Centipede, Donkey Kong, TRON, Smash TV ect, ect. It was a bit of an escape and the games, the graphics, the colors really sparked me.
What happens when you start a collection, do you have inspirational tactics that you employ? Yes, I definitely have a process. I’ll start by casting a wide net gathering tons of pictures and reference and making notes about everything that I’m thinking about and is currently inspiring me. Major themes start to appear and I weave together a story. Sketching pieces and graphic ideas come next and that has it’s editing process. Then it’s just about making the samples which I do by hand. Phew! The art direction of the lookbooks is the really fun part. It brings everything to life.
What music do you listen to when you are working? When you are finished?
This season I was bumpin’ Glass Candy, Azealia Banks 1991, Iggy Azalea Trapgold and a mix I made of Major Lazer/Diplo tracks, Elliphant and of course some Tommy Lee a.k.a.Uncle Demon. I need really live music to get thru all that sewing! After I need silence. Probably just watch some Judge Judy.
How do you know when something is finished?
When I run out of time.
Who would you love to dress
I would so love to dress… Elliphant, Phlo Finister, Santigold, M.I.A. and Gita Speaxdaily. I’ll just stop there.
What is one phrase that a “Hello Eliza” girl would say alot?
What is one piece from the collection that you would be like DAMN GIRL if you saw someone wearing?
The GAME OVER dress cause it takes some balwz!
What is a common theme amongst your customers?
They all are women that run with the wolves.
Any plans for a brick and mortar shop?
Well I think first I’d like a working studio/retail space. I love the idea of working, manufacturing, shooting and selling out of 1 space. Kind of a Savile Row steeze.
What’s the most embarrassing thing you have ever worn?
I don’t know. I’ve always had great style:/-
What are your favorite pieces in your closet now?
I love my ASH wedge sneakers, this awesome vintage football jersey I found at Rad Summer and a quilted purple bomber I got at YO!Vintage.
Tell us a typical date night outfit.
A little black dress, Cheap Monday sandals and dark purple lipstick. Me and husband are super simple people. Kinda modern hippies. He appreciates my natural beauty.
What are some current projects you are working on.
Currently knee deep into F/W ’13-’14. Sewing, setting up the shoot etc. Also a street fashion/forecasting blog and bi-annual publication called We Wear Black coming this Fall.