Photography by Eric Isaac

Laura Kim and Fernando Garcia

Designers, Monse | Co-Creative Directors, ODLR

| Tribeca

No matter which side of the line you fall on fur-lined mules or lone drop earrings, one trend is resoundingly clear: fashion designers Laura Kim and Fernando Garcia are “in.” The pair debuted their joint label, Monse just over a year ago, but with heavy hitters like Amal Clooney, Sarah Jessica Parker and Brie Larson already stepping out in their designs, who would know it? Age is only a number… we suppose? In reality, Monse has already nailed the “undone done” look that some designers work years to achieve; its signature unkempt elegance has made humble fabrics (like gabardine) chic, banded belts, sexy, and men’s shirting, girlishly formal– at Monse, button-downs are deconstructed and twisted into single-shoulder tops and modern gowns, of course. Indeed, together, Kim and Garcia bring a freshness to fashion that’s coveted, albeit rare. It’s no wonder that a direct message to Sarah Rutson via LinkedIn was all the design duo needed for their first collection to be picked up by Net-a-Porter; nor, that a Swarovski Award nomination for Womenswear at the CFDA Awards would soon follow. The design duo’s pedigree is no less noteworthy— meeting at Oscar de la Renta, Kim worked under the late great designer for 12 years (eventually rising to the role of design director) while Garcia transitioned from design assistant to head of VIP dressing to senior designer. Responsible for many of ODLR’s recent, critically-acclaimed collections, their departure didn’t go unnoticed; and, thanks to a storybook-worthy twist of fate, it wouldn’t be final either: this past fall, the two were tapped co-creative directors of the iconic house, a post that has them overseeing everything from ready-to-wear and accessories to bridal to children’s wear. Between their upcoming debut for de la Renta (Fall/Winter ’17 marks the inaugural collection) and their own ever-popular, ever-inspired brand, we have a feeling these two aren’t just “in”— they’re here to stay. Here, Kim and Garcia sits down with CITIPHILE to share their little black book on NYC.

NEIGHBORHOOD STANDBY: LK: Locanda Verde (MAP IT, BOOK IT, x) for the roast chicken for two or their fresh donuts at breakfast.
FG: The Waverly Inn (MAP IT, BOOK IT, x) for eggs Benedict or the burger.

COFFEE OR TEA: Coffee— La Colombe (MAP IT, x) does it best.

COCKTAIL DE LA NUIT: A spritz or vodka martini at the bar inside the St. Regis (MAP IT, x).
FG: A dirty martini from The Odeon (MAP IT, BOOK IT, x).

AFTER-WORK HAPY HOUR: We’ll have a glass of champagne at the studio or go for a drink at The Odeon.

DINNER WITH FRIENDS: Indochine (MAP IT, BOOK IT, x) or Vinegar Hill House (MAP IT, BOOK ITx).

WHERE TO BRING OUT-OF-TOWNERS: LK: A walk over the Brooklyn Bridge is always nice.
FG: The West Side Highway.

MUSIC PICK: LK: The playlists at our runway shows have been pretty amazing…
FG: Wherever our music designer, Sebastien Perrin is playing.

BEST BRUNCH: The Greenwich Hotel— it’s quiet and cozy.

BEST PEOPLE WATCHING: LK: I love sitting at Greecologies on Broome Street (MAP IT, x) and eating yogurt while watching people walk around SoHo.
FG: The streets.

GUILTY PLEASURE: LK: The icebox cake from Billy’s Bakery (MAP IT, x).
FG: Midnight pizza from Rocco’s (MAP IT, x).

NY’S BEST-KEPT SECRET: LK: That every culture is readily available.
FG: The private garden at The Greenwich Hotel.

FIRST THING WE MISS WHEN WE’RE AWAY: LK: Walking to work in the morning.
FG: My friends.

REGULAR AT: LK: Exhale (MAP IT, BOOK IT, x) three times per week, SoulCycle (MAP IT, BOOK ITx) twice and SLT (MAP IT, BOOK IT) once!
FG: Equinox (MAP IT, x) or I’ll take a run down the streets of New York.

TO SEE AND BE SEEN: FG: The Boom Boom Room (MAP ITx).

TO RELAX AND UNWIND: The Spa at The Greenwich Hotel (MAP IT, x). 

GO-TO GETAWAY: Glenmere Mansion (MAP ITx)— usually, we do not have time to take off more than a weekend so we check into The Glenmere for a staycation.

AUTUMN IN THE CITY: LK: I love going to the farmer’s market (MAP ITx) on Saturday mornings— the flowers and plants that they sell are always in-tune with the season that we are in.

CLOSET CHECK: LK: I’m always in heels… I like to shop at Net-a-Porter and I love buying super random pieces on Ebay and the vintage shops on Instagram.
FG: I wear tee shirts and jeans, mostly from Acne (MAP IT, x) or Opening Ceremony (MAP ITx).

BEST HOME DÉCOR: LK: I like clean and modern furniture, plus one or two bohemian pieces. I usually find them when I’m searching for fabric for our collections.

BEAUTY BLACK BOOK: Tribeca Spa of Tranquility (MAP IT, BOOK IT, x)— they give a great facial.

ULTIMATE NY MOMENT: Seeing SJP walking her kids to school every morning while the paparazzi chases her. CP

Laura & Fernando’s New York

From L to R: First Row: Yogurt from Greecologies; La Colombe; Design by Monse; Donuts at The Greenwich Hotel. Second Row: The Glenmere Mansion; Product from Net-a-Porter; Dessert at The Odeon; Inside The Boom Boom Room.

From L to R: First Row: Yogurt from Greecologies; La Colombe; Design by Monse; Donuts at The Greenwich Hotel. Second Row: The Glenmere Mansion; Product from Net-a-Porter; Inside The Boom Boom Room; A dirty martini.

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