Matthew Ames’ Avant-Garde Monastic Chic!

Recent Ecco Domani award winner and lovely Brooklyn-based designer Matthew Ames showed a collection of avant-garde sophistication that kept it cool by mixing "classic American" and luxe fabrics with flowing cashmere hooded coats, ultrasuede jumpsuits and obi jackets, denim kimonos and silky crepe harem pants. Avant-challenged? The individual pieces are completely wearable with Ames' white T-shirts and his simple black silk jersey obi dress. The Encens magazine creative team provided a monastic vibe and saturated colors of ecru, camel, tobacco, black, beige, red and indigo had us thinking "Avant-Japanese desert dwelling bedouins." Matthew later informed us his inspiration was an ongoing design evolution with an emphasis on the purity of fabric and body, and we added another inept analogy to our already lengthy list.