Studio Series: Samantha Pleet's Dream House

November 02, 2015 BY WATM STAFF

Known for her signature twisted tailoring, ethereal sensibility, and whimsical prints, Samantha Pleet dresses effortlessly cool, smart, and creative women who build the world they want to live in. The Pratt Institute alumn along with Patrick Pleet, who studied architecture at UPenn, have established a cult following with dreamers, artists, and musicians alike. The duo recently relocated their studio from the Garment District to Brooklyn to be closer to their core customer base and a supportive network of retailers (see Swords Smith and Concrete and Water). “Six windows including a skylight- I don’t want to leave.” The Barbie-dream workspace, coined as the “Samantha Pleet Dream House,” will host many photoshoots, a constant in Pleet’s creative process that brings each season’s narrative to life. As we sipped cappuccinos and an ethereal sounding mix of psychedelic jazz flooded the welcoming space, we learned a thing or two about the Brooklyn-based designer whose imagination is as lively as the clothes the clothes she designs.

I Love New York

“I moved here in 2000 to attend Pratt. Originally I was studying painting and after a year of living in New York I switched over to the Fashion Department. It was great to have the opportunity to find myself in New York in those four years- to experiment and be weird. While I was school in school I interned at threeASFOUR for a year. They were ASFOUR at the time and truly a fixture of the Lower East Side scene. I was able to seek out different subcultures in New York and really explore them, not from an internet stand point, but actually experience them as they were happening.”

Shop Girl

“In 2006, I worked at TG-170 in the Lower Eastside for a year when I had just sort of started sewing my own things and wearing them into work. And she was like, ‘We should sell them here.’ All the characters that would come in, you would meet so many interesting people.”


“The first piece I designed under Samantha Pleet was a harlequin printed romper, with red tights, a tricorne hat and a big bow. When I started Samantha Pleet, the style was very medieval; pirates, tricorne hats and sword pins. I feel like that will always be a part of what I do, but I think my style has become a lot more modern since then.”

Designing with Patrick Pleet

“Patrick and I have been obsessed, like nerds, about design and architecture throughout our lives. We’re really inspired by modernist architecture and design when there was a sense of humor to it’s design sensibilities. He’s definitely the left brain. He is very creative but also has an architectural point of view and is very logical and practical when it comes to design. We’ll sit down and look at the collection and he will really push me to work harder. I tend to easily fall in love with things but he’s a great editor. I’ve really seen a huge difference in the collection and the progression of the business as a whole since we started working together full-time.”

Haunted Vacation

“SS 16 is very nostalgic to me. A lot of it is inspired by my grandmother’s tudor outside of Philadelphia. She hasn’t renovated it since the 60’s so it has a very beautiful nostalgic sensibility to it. We decided to take some wallpaper from her actual house and make it into some prints. I spent many years of my childhood there and it’s filled with many memories. It feels like the most beautiful place in the world to me. This glamourous resort feeling also came into the collection but in a haunted, magical kind of way. Recently my grandfather passed away so there are echoes of him and his life. I wanted the collection to feel like a haunted house so I reached out to Jenna Gribbon, an amazing New York surrealist painter, who also owns The Oracle Club in Long Island City. We’ve been friends for a long time and we are inspired by eachother’s work so this was an exciting collaboration. She really helped bring my vision to life.”




In God We Trust


McCarren Park

Photography by Chandler Kennedy