HALPERN Invites You To Their Dreamhouse

HALPERN Invites You To Their Dreamhouse

HALPERN Invites You To Their Dreamhouse

And just in time for the new Greta Gerwig movie!

And just in time for the new Greta Gerwig movie!

Text: Henry Chandonnet

Who’s a more iconic childhood figure than Barbie? In capturing that adolescent spirit, HALPERN collaborates with Mattel for their London Fashion Week SS23 show. The collection marks the 60th anniversary of the Barbie Dreamhouse, a toy that deeply impacted the creative sensibilities of designer Michael Halpern (and children everywhere). And the looks hold up – they’re bright but elegant, nostalgic but present. 

Image courtesy of Thomas De Cruz Media
Image courtesy of Thomas De Cruz Media

Halpern collaborates with Mattel on eight of the collection's looks, each inspired by the palettes and patterns intrinsic to the Barbie Dreamhouse. These include Barbie’s classic chevron pattern, polka dots, and sunset coloration. These are not your traditional slip dresses to decorate your personal Barbie in. No, these garments are high-class and elegant, embracing the patterns of the kid’s toy but translating them to an adult medium. 

In one of the collection’s stand-out looks, the model is draped head to toe in a vibrant blue fabric. This includes a hood wrapping around her head, and is adorned with oversized bows and knots around the neckline. Shades of blue are layered to give the garment dimension. The result is a fun, playful garment that has a certain classic allure, one that stands on its own. 

Image courtesy of Thomas De Cruz Media
Image courtesy of Thomas De Cruz Media

For the other portion of his collection, Halpern maintains his focus on childhood, but with a more personal tinge. He recounts dinner parties that his parents would throw in his childhood after moving from New York City upstate. An homage to his mother, the looks recount her dinner party outfits that dripped with glamor and ‘70s mystique.

These looks center in specific palettes and textures, being predominantly built out of leopard print and velvet. They range in form, from pantsuits to evening gowns, but all maintain that certain grand feeling. And, as is true of many HALPERN looks, the garments are thoroughly adorned with sequins and ruffles. Beautiful and timeless, the collection stands as a loving tribute to those who helped Halpern reach this point in his career. 

Image courtesy of Thomas De Cruz Media
Image courtesy of Thomas De Cruz Media

The infatuation with childhood is certainly nothing new. Just this season, JW Anderson and Sandy Liang ran collections with entirely youthful aesthetics. No, what sets HALPERN apart is the personalization of the inspiration. In grounding the collection in his favorite childhood toy, the Barbie Dreamhouse, and the childhood presence of his mother, HALPERN’s SS23 collection gains a certain gravitas. It can achieve so much more, because of how grounded it is in real, present stories. 

Image courtesy of Thomas De Cruz Media
Image courtesy of Thomas De Cruz Media
Credits: Images courtesy of Halpern

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