Just over ten years ago, while studying at Parson’s School of Design in New York, Jack McCollough and Lazaro Hernandez joined forces to create the Proenza Schouler label. Now, the talented design duo is celebrating their third CFDA Womenswear Designer of the Year award.
A Designer of the Year award from the Council of Fashion Designers of America is one of the most prestigious in the industry. Proenza Schouler took out their first in 2007, received the honour again in 2011, and added another to their collection earlier this month, beating highly respected nominees Marc Jacobs and Alexander Wang.
Interestingly, the award-winning collection is a somewhat nostalgic re-enactment of their very first collection, which started out as a collaborative effort for their senior thesis and ended up being snapped up by Barneys New York in 2003. It is therefore no surprise that Proenza Schouler has again teamed up with Barneys to showcase the reissued pieces, appropriately titled “First Collection.”
Dennis Freedman, Barneys’ creative director, partnered with McCollough and Hernandez to create stunning window displays at the Madison Avenue store. With a highly original “science experiments” theme, the windows feature lasers, complex wiring systems, earthy rock displays, tanks of moving liquid and lighting effects. The collection itself includes the label’s original signature structured jackets, super thin and loose-fitting t-shirts and feminine bustiers.
The pair behind Proenza Schouler draws their inspiration from contemporary art and youth culture. Their collections are renowned for the use of custom developed fabrics, their excellence in craftsmanship and tailoring and their superb attention to detail. Since the birth of Proenza Schouler, when McCollough and Hernandez chose to name their label after their respective mothers’ maiden names, the duo have come a long way and have no doubt made two New York mothers very proud.