Stepping foot into Thomas Lavin’s impeccable showroom at the PDC brings visitors into his world—one that’s sophisticated, tailored and sprinkled with a dash of whimsy. The same description can be applied to the man himself.
PHOTO BY DON FLOOD
HOW DID YOU GET INTO THE DESIGN WORLD? I worked in events and PR out of college and my boss at the PR firm was deeply knowledgeable about design and culture—and was dear friends with the legendary Jerry Leen. I had the privilege of joining them for lunch on a couple of occasions and was moved by their passion. It felt like it was preordained that I would find my career in design.
WHEN DID YOU FIRST BECOME INTERESTED IN STYLE? In utero. There is a great photograph of my younger brother and me when I was 5—circa 1970—in matching short suits for Easter.
HOW WOULD YOU DESCRIBE YOUR STYLE? Constantly evolving
DID ANYONE FROM YOUR CHILDHOOD INFLUENCE YOUR STYLE? My Uncle Rich was the best-dressed man: Gucci loafers, tailor-made shirts, Swiss watches. As a teenager, I inherited his gently used garments and shoes and went to high school feeling like a million dollars.
WHAT’S A TYPICAL FORMAL LOOK FOR YOU? If I’m going for it, a Comme des Garçons Homme Plus gray wool skirt over Givenchy leggings with combat boots, a Lanvin white shirt, a Dior skinny black tie over which I wear a Mikimoto x Comme des Garçons collab necklace, and a Lanvin biker jacket.
WHAT’S NEXT FOR YOU? My sister Mary and I are partners in our proprietary line, Lavinder. This fall, we are launching a major indoor textile collection with 400 SKUs. We are very excited. Wallcovering is next. In order to give designers and clients a more engaging experience, we have created special lifestyle boutiques at the showroom for C&C Milano, de Le Cuona, Galbraith & Paul and Rosemary Hallgarten. The talented and famous Kit Kemp created our boutique for Christopher Farr Cloth. The experience is much more akin to shopping at a luxury concept shop or department store.
Maison Francis Kurkdjian Paris Oud silk Mood eau de parfum, franciskurkdjian.com; PHOTO COURTESY OF BRANDS