When we last spoke to Naeem Anthony, the creative mind behind label Helen Anthony, the brand was in the midst of the official rollout for its Pandemic Collection. The collection was a fusion of everything that brought Helen Anthony to our attention in the first place: clever, elegant designs fusing styles from around the world, all imbued with a sense of time and place that made each piece feel both up-to-the-minute and, simply put, timeless. As the present pandemic has kept many of us confined to our homes, the collection opted to focus on loungewear, bringing a touch of luxury into our new socially-distanced reality.
For our second conversation with Anthony, Schön! returned to the Pandemic Collection, asking about the label’s shift to unisex design, the collection’s various accessories and where the label finds inspiration today.
Welcome to the new year! What’s new for Helen Anthony in 2021?
Thank you! It has been a very different time for everyone as the start to a new year, but for us, we have been able to focus on a new collection and developing the Helen Anthony brand and vision.
When we first featured the Pandemic Collection, you said you were originally inspired to create luxury loungewear. As the pandemic continues, how has your view of the “Pandemic Collection” changed?
Over the course of the last year, there has definitely been a development in luxury loungewear as I have realised that it is about making things accessible and versatile for the new ‘normal’ life. Comfort and formality is merging. The pandemic has reminded people of comfort, the new flexible, adaptive way of life, sustainability and being able to invest in pieces that can be worn in many situations when we are able to get out again.
You mentioned last time that you started to embrace unisex designs in your collections. What inspired this shift?
I have always designed for the ‘power person’, and having done a womenswear collection and carrying that through, I saw similarities in wanting my designs to give the customer confidence and have them be able to express themselves. Someone like Harry Styles really influences me.
Can you introduce us to the accessories of this collection, e.g. the hats and bags? Tell us a little more about them.
I like to be able to provide an entire outfit and vision. The hats definitely have a Western style influence. The bags are very versatile so you are able to choose how to wear them to mix up the look you are going for.
What has been inspiring you lately?
I am always inspired by bringing the East to the West, so I will continue to explore that and bring it to my designs in new ways.
All Helen Anthony Collections are available at the Pop PR Showroom.
2 Jackson & Joseph Building
8 Princelet Street
8166 Melrose Avenue
photography. Alex Piñero
art direction. Naeem Anthony
styling. Cara Natalie
models. Madu Garcia, Paula Soares + Sheldon Chang @ Select Model London
make up. Maria Comparetto
hair. Fabio Vivan using R+Co
photography assistant + videography. Pablo Ruiz
hair assistant. Maja Blawuciak
make up assistant. Molly King