The Simple Things: Tim Hamilton

 “I like a simple approach to fashion,” said Tim Hamilton, discussing the spring 2011 menswear looks he showed in Paris this June. The collection, which was inspired by utilitarian uniforms and the eerie portraits of Belgian artist Michaël Borremans, was cleaner, sharper and more direct than the New York-based designer’s former sartorial endeavors. Hamilton’s affinity for simplicity was reflected in his signature tailoring, architectural shapes and a cool grey, cream and khaki coloring. But don’t mistake “simple” for “boring”; Hamilton’s deconstructed approach to suiting (lapel-less jackets with asymmetrical necklines, tapered drop-crotch trousers and a long-waisted single-button vest), was anything but. “I think these clothes project a more grown up version of what I’ve done in the past,” stated Hamilton, who won the CFDA’s emerging menswear designer award in 2009. LEFT: PHOTO BY DAVID NEEDLEMAN

This more seasoned approach to design is apparent not only in Hamilton’s aforementioned eponymous collection, but in his darker street-wear inspired diffusion line, Redux, which was launched in 2007. In an effort to evolve this youthful line, Hamilton looks to collaborate with other contemporary brands to which he can relate. Enter Lacoste. This spring, Hamilton is featured in the French label’s Legends collection, a new footwear design project that calls upon 12 innovators in the worlds of music, media and design to create their own interpretation of a traditional Lacoste shoe. Hamlton’s contribution, a pair black garment-dyed canvas high-tops embellished with lots of lace-holes and a structured binding to resemble a military boot, is a new take on the classic 1963 René Lacoste style. “I chose what I thought would be the purest Lacoste shoe,” he explains. “It’s very modern and clean and by adding military laces and making it a super-high top shoe, I feel that the worlds of [Redux] and Lacoste came together in the best sort of mix.” Hamilton’s sophisticated Lacoste Legends trainers will make their debut this September during the Redux presentation at MAC/Milk.