Fashion designer Michael DePaulo is having a good year. Last February, the Boston native made his Palm Beach debut to critical acclaim and is getting ready to launch a new bridal and ready-to-wear line in December. Known primarily for his cocktail, evening and special occasion designs, DePaulo’s use of sophisticated lines with an innovative edge has attracted an A-list clientele that includes media and sports powerhouse Linda Pizzuti Henry and Tony Award-winning theater director Diane Paulus. We recently caught up with the handsome and peripatetic 34-year-old over coffee in the South End, where we talked about the intersection of fashion, design and architecture as well as the joys of the perfect plate of pasta.
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When possible I generally stop for any piece of furniture I see on the side of the road. The only time I really force myself to keep driving is if I don’t have time, or the piece won’t fit in my car. My rule of thumb has nothing to do with illegal driving methods because rules behind the wheel don’t apply to Bostonians. With that being said, this piece actually came from inside the dumpster at my apartment – so there was no “flipping a bitch” on Dorchester Ave into oncoming traffic or considerately double parking on Boylston during morning rush hour, for a piece of furniture.
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Ralph Lauren stated, “I really wanted to do something big for the new Polo Women’s brand – something set in the city — that felt modern. We returned to Central Park, a place I love, and captured the spirit of Polo with a truly innovative mix of fashion and technology.”
And he achieved just that at his SS’15 show. Ralph Lauren has set a precedent for Fashion Week by showing his Women’s Polo collection on a 4D projection on a wall of water in Central Park.
Partnering with MPC Creative New York, Ralph Lauren took his audience on a journey of over 13,000 frames through the elusive world of fashion. There exists a dreamy, unobtainable essence of Fashion Week and Ralph made that feeling literal. I understand the efforts that are involved in creating a collection, and that adrenaline rush when first exposing your work. Ralph took this to a brand new f***ing level, making this debut completely magical. While I am a sucker for simplicity, appreciating the music, lights and sole focus on the garments themselves, Ralph Lauren delivered a fresh, innovative presentation that fits right into this digital world. Presentation is everything and this collaboration hit it right out of Central Park.
Take a look into his workshop and think hoarder. Door knobs, broken windows, dressers missing drawers, table tops, pieces of old wood that clearly belong in the trash. Or do they? Because dumpster diving is the original source of all that makes up this heaping mess. Now take a look into the next room; pieces reminiscent of West Elm, Anthropologie and Restoration Hardware. You guessed it, they’re not actually from those stores – they’re from the trash. Harry Koffman has an eye for what others consider to be trash; he sees the potential where others don’t. He’s designed rooms using 100% recycled furniture and accessories, turning bland, boring spaces into works of art that range from historic, to modern to chic. Why does he do it? There’s enough trash in the world today as it is, Harry is a firm believer in recycling and sustainability. His work can be summed up in three words: revamp. restore. re-love.
You can check out his work here at harrykoffman.com or by searching #handymo via Instagram.
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CHIEF FASHION CORRESPONDENT
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