Buzzy British resort wear label Kalita couldn’t have come up with a better name for its latest collection than “Muse” referencing the nine Greek goddesses of inspiration. Indeed, inspired and inspiring, the pieces drape with ethereal grace, billowing as you sip cocktails on a boat gliding across Caribbean waters, just right for hosting Hamptons brunches or dining al fresco in Santorini. Resort, or as some call it “cruise”, collections were originally conceived as the ideal wardrobe for residents of the Upper East Side, Beacon Hill or Rittenhouse Square, for ladies of leisure who would flee to warmer climes during winter. Eventually, it would become more associated with interstices in the retail seasons, without ever losing its fundamental link to luxurious travel. But Kalita redefines it yet again as year-round wear for the well-heeled vagabond.
Created by Bali based, Rae Temily, and London based, Kalita Al Swaidi, the brand was born out of their own near nomadic pace of trekking to and from various destinations. They endeavored to come out with garments that could not only endure the rigors of packing and unpacking but would come out of those suitcases looking effortlessly chic. Another striking facet of the line is its uncommon colors, chiefly because they are custom created out of clippings of unusual fabrics, book pages, photographs collected from Misses Temily and al Swaidi’s travels and then hand dyed into the finest cottons or habotai silks.
The line launched a year ago with a tightly edited capsule collection of statement pieces that took a bow via e-tailer Modus Operandi’s online “trunk show” Beyond the Beach. The following collection, called “I Left My Heart in St Barths”, further cemented its reputation, drawing the attention of former Marie Claire accessories director Taylor Tomasi Hill, now VP for Dallas store Forty Five Ten. Ms. Hill brought the designers out to the Lone Star State for a dinner celebrating the brand’s debut at there.
That a brand from the UK by way of Indonesia would resonate with Texans is a testament to the line’s versatility in appearing suitable in the city, on the beach, day or evening, in whatever continent you happen to awaken. Now New York department stores are reportedly expressing interest in carrying the collection. As for the actual season, well after all, there’s always warm weather somewhere in the world.
IMAGES courtesy of Kalita