A Clothing Line That Simplifies Getting Dressed

Over the years, Christine Centenera, the stylist and fashion director of Vogue Australia, found that she was constantly being solicited for fashion advice. Her sisters would wonder about a well-tailored black blazer that didn’t cost an arm and a leg; friends would inquire where to buy the best T-shirts or the simplest black trousers.

“You’re always asked these questions,” she says. “And often I find it difficult to send them places that are reasonable — middle-ground but really well-made pieces.”

So along with her partner of 10 years, the Australian designer Josh Goot, Centenera decided to design the solution: Wardrobe NYC, an edited collection of high-quality basics for men and women, which launches online tomorrow.

The full collection features only 16 pieces: eight for men and eight for women, the basis for what Goot and Centenera feel is a simple, unimpeachable wardrobe that would work for people in many different professions, regardless of personal styles, ages and body types. (Many of the pieces are cut generously and range in sizes; their men’s T-shirt, for one, runs from small to 3XL.) The men’s collection includes a roomy overcoat, a two-button blazer, a T-shirt, a pair of loosefitting trousers and a hoodie; for women, there is also a gloriously big coat, a white collarless shirt, black leggings, an A-line skirt and more. Everything is black or white — a palette Goot calls “democratic” and “solutions-based.” Together, the clothes seem like the kinds of things you’d want to wear so often, you might be inspired to purge your closet of everything else.

“This is our way of saying to people, this season, this is what we think you should be wearing,” Centenera says, as the couple share a couch in their light-filled NoHo loft, pieces from the new collection hanging on a rack nearby. “Being authoritative is our way of providing a solution for people. I think that is a huge solution for people to get on with their lives and not having to be so challenged by what and how to put things together.”

Josh Goot and Christine Centenera.CreditWill Davidson

The collection is produced entirely in Italy and will be sold exclusively on the brand’s site. For both men and women, the entire eight-piece wardrobe costs $3,000; also available is a four-piece “core” wardrobe ($1,500) which consists, for women, of a blazer, a T-shirt, a button-down and a skirt, and for men, of a blazer, a button-down, a T-shirt and trousers. Items are not available individually.

The instinct to pare down represents a departure from many designer collections — as well as a change from fast-fashion clothing, in which items are churned out in bulk for low prices. In an age of peak Gucci-fication, the approach feels almost radical. “What we’re trying to say is, this is less, and it’s really well done, and it will last you a really long time, and it will never go out of style,” Goot says. “These pieces are forever. What’s so great and different about working this way is that it’s not about the excess production, or the excess styles that everyone designs in conventional models. It’s also people’s time.”

To keep customers coming back, the designers will introduce a new themed collection each season — this spring, they’ll produce pieces focused around the idea of “urban sport.” (Centenera, who is a consultant for Kanye West’s Yeezy line, knows a thing or two about the category.) “It’s difficult to find athleisure that’s not branded — that doesn’t have funny logos all over it, but that’s still beautifully made,” she says. Eventually, Goot says, they will aim to collaborate with “best-in-class” brands in other categories to roll out one accessory each season.

But for now, they’re just focusing on the basics. As Goot puts it, glancing at their first installment, “One of our big goals is to give people the opportunity to wear really high-quality clothes.”



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