Raised in Bahrain and London, Misha Nonoo spent her early years inspired by the vibrant colors and array of textiles in Middle Eastern souks and markets. This cultural influence is evident in designs that juxtapose whimsical childhood memories with her adolescent immersion in the UK’s counterculture. While living in Europe for school, Nonoo developed her appreciation for fashion and brand cultures, as she experienced the formidable development of the luxury industry through the ’90s and beyond. She later spent time working for fashion houses in Paris, the epicenter of style, structure and effortless elegance, before settling in New York where she launched her jacket and coat label, Nonoo.
What’s hot right now?
I’ve just been to Berlin for the first time and really enjoyed the underground art movement that I experienced there. In particular, I discovered an artist called Thilo Heinzmann who’s textural work I really admire—I would love one of his pieces that looks like paint has been sprayed onto the canvas. While in Berlin, I also went to the popular Claerchens Ballhaus, a ’20s dance hall where couples dance the tango, cha-cha and salsa to live bands under a beautiful vaulted ceiling with paint peeling from the walls. It’s an extremely romantic place and the dilapidation of the hall adds to the atmosphere. I love art but often find that I don’t have enough time to visit galleries and learn about the fledgling artists whose work might be interesting or a good investment, and for this reason I am really excited about the new art platform Paddle8, which not only holds curated sales by some of the worlds leading gallerists but also gives you an insight into what other people in the art world are collecting. Finally, I am passionate about food and am fascinated by the new movements that are popping up in New York surrounding our food and the ethics of the food system. As such, I really like The Fat Radish, a new restaurant on Manhattan’s Lower East Side which uses seasonal ingredients and advocates the farm-to-table approach.
Other than Nonoo jackets, what are your fall must-haves?
My fall must-haves center around my lifestyle, which varies from city life to weekends in the country or abroad. I’m an advocate of a very well edited wardrobe as it makes life much easier when constantly on the go. I have an eclectic mix of tailored separates that I live in and top off with my jackets or coats. The essential items that I’m looking to add to my wardrobe for fall include Chloé‘s high waisted cuffed pants, the Ida jacket from my collection Nonoo, Miu Miu‘s studded patent kitten heels and the Mini Popleopard print bag from Lanvin.
What were your favorite shows from the spring/summer ’11 collections?
My favorite shows from s/s ’11 were Mary Katrantzou and Alexander McQueen. I really enjoyed seeing what Sarah Burton did at McQueen this season as she had big shoes to fill, which must have been an extremely daunting position to be in. However I thought that she rose to the challenge well. She took elements of McQueen’s work and gave them a femininity and softness, which hasn’t previously been witnessed at the label. I thought that Mary Katrantzou’s collection was very original and fresh, and I appreciate that at a time when so many fashion houses stage enormous big budget shows full of spectacle but rarely originality.
What were your takeaway trends?
I think that hats and headwear (turbans in particular) are gaining in popularity, and come spring will be big news. I also think that textured fabrics and paint techniques (seen on clothing but also in beauty trends) will be a stealth trend that will be commercialized for the mass market. Finally, tailored separates have been gaining in importance over the past few seasons and were all over the catwalks for s/s ’11, meaning that pants, jackets and blouses are here to stay.