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Frame, the cool-kid denim brand, has a new collaboration. Not with a celebrity, artist, or even some buzzy in-the-know store—but with The Carlyle.
Yes, you read that right—casual, L.A.-born Frame teamed up with the very Upper East Side hotel that, with its Dorothy Draper-era interiors and regular jazz nights, epitomizes the idea of “old New York.” Simply put: they aren’t the most obvious of pairings. But Frame co-founder and creative-director Erick Torstensson insists they have more shared design DNA than you think. “Since we started Frame, we’ve looked at classic, timeless style and The Carlyle is just that. As an institution it is elegant and sophisticated, but never tries too hard and stands proudly as it has for decades,” he says.
The collection includes two sweatshirts and a white baseball cap emblazoned with The Carlyle crest. It’s very much apropos for this pandemic age, where athleisure is the dominant aesthetic of choice for even the most elegant among us. Sure, the sweatshirts don’t like something Princess Diana, a regular Carlyle guest, would wear to Bemelmans Bar. But they do look exactly like something Diana, a regular Carlyle guest, did wear in paparazzi photographs outside her gym. “Polished and sophisticated, while also casual and spirited,” Torstensson says.Natalie Suarez in a Frame x Carlyle sweatshirt.Photo: By Natalie and Dylana Suarez.
Why do this collaboration now? Partially because this fall, Frame opened their first store on the Upper East Side. But also because during this very unusual period we’re living through, cities, and their signature lodgings and clubs, are suddenly off-limits to large swaths of people. “During the past year, we have not been able to visit our favorite places—The Carlyle being one of ours, so we thought we would bring the Carlyle to you,” explains Torstensson.
The hospitality industry, like so many others, has been hit hard by the coronavirus. (Especially in urban places—London is currently experiencing a 77 percent drop in international tourists, and recently, The New York Times reported New York City’s tourism numbers won’t recover until 2025.) Limited travel means less guests, and gathering-size limits means limited weddings and events. So the Carlyle is just one of many iconic haunts that are getting creative about expanding their brand beyond their gilded halls.
Now, hotels selling stuff is nothing new. Gift shops have been around forever. But what is different? The high-profile names these hotels are working with—and also, how they act as a muse for the final product.A model wears a Timo Weiland dinner jacket inspired by the National Arts Club.Photo: By Alan Eckstein & Donna Kang
Recently, Timo Weiland collaborated with the National Arts Club on creating a series of dinner jackets inspired by their Gramercy townhouse’s eclectic interior. (Members can order the jackets, and 100 percent of the proceeds benefit the nonprofit.) In February, The Beverly Hills Hotel announced their own pajama line—made in their signature pink-and-white stripes—with Shhh Silk. Available for purchase? PJs, lounge dresses, eye masks, scrunchies, bandanas, and robes.
And many of these products won’t just be sold in the lobby: You can find The Carlyle merch, for example, on Frame.com and at their Upper East side store.
You may not be able to visit these places at the moment. You can, however, buy a little piece of them—and support them in the process. Then, when our passports do finally let us hop on a plane, or we are allowed to attend an event, their doors will be open, ready, and waiting.
Below, shop Frame’s capsule collection with The Carlyle.
Carlyle Small Crest Sweatshirt in Clover Green
Carlyle Sweatshirt in Off White