Hint pays attention to retail


Vivienne Westwood is up to her usual hijinks. The designer's fashion moment that started last year with an exhibition at London's Victoria & Albert Museum continues unabated with the launch of her new Hardcore diamond line. Befitting the quintessential English eccentric, it features safety pins, pierced-heart brooches, signature orbs, chains dripping with silver and, of course, lots of diamonds. "These symbols are sexy," says Westwood. "And the way I put everything together is a little cruel, a little S&M. I wanted things that are human and understood. All's fair in love and war." But while she caters to her customer's indulgent side, Westwood believes the baubles shouldn't cost the arm and leg for which they're destined. Thus, prices hover around $500, though some can soar to $13,000. They are diamonds, afterall. Available at Vivienne Westwood boutiques worldwide.

Until now, we couldn't fully embrace the collectible toy craze that has quietly crept upon our shores from—where else?—Japan. Not that we found it infantile (trust us, we love our grown-up toys), nor did we have a problem with the vinyl figurines themselves. It was the fashion, or lack thereof, that left us a little cold. But leave it to Barneys to solve the dilemma. The emporium has teamed up with Kidrobot, the SoHo-based makers of the world's most sought-after art toys, to create a small set of fashion-forward dolls. Skullhead, a 12" limited-edition figure created by artist Huck Gee, is outfitted in your choice of (clockwise from top left) Rick Owens, Dries Van Noten, Marc Jacobs, Jil Sander and Duckie Brown (not shown). We think the milky-white, scepter-wielding winged boneheads make the perfect mannequin; these little guys definitely don't cramp our style. $295, Barneys New York, 660 Madison Avenue, 212-826-8900. -Suleman Anaya
Brooklyn-born Marko Kalfa grew up surrounded by slick-haired cousins talking trash and getting laid. They sported wifebeaters, mounds of gold chains and pants tight enough to show their tortellini. So it made perfect sense when, several years ago, Kalfa began designing retro tees with hotdog and palm tree motifs. Soon, however, his empire bulged bigger than he had room for, so he called upon costume designer Carlos Campos. Together, they created Guido, a sexed-up formal line for the manly man who takes his drinks hard and his speedos studded. But hold onto your handlebar, there's more. The boys continue to smoke with bespoke suits in the works for fall. Clients will have one-on-one appointments with Campos, who, using high-quality Italian materials, will have the order ready within four weeks. Prices range from $40 for T-shirts to $140 for denim jeans and $450 for blazers. Available in New York at Pat Field, 382 W. Broadway, 212-966-4066, and in Los Angeles at White Trash Charms, 951 Hillhurst Avenue, 323-666-9585. -Cator Sparks

Partly inspired by Emily the Strange, the children's book character bearing a striking resemblance to Tuesday Addams and who should not be confused with the 80's drag personality Steve Strange, Takahiro Miyashita is clearly dabbling in the dark side for his Number (N)ine label. The self-taught Japanese men's designer has dunked everything but the kitchen sink in transparent acrylic, making for bulky, unapologetic accessories that harken to the days when at least one Hint editor roamed the streets of L.A. in 5-inch monster boots and black eyeliner. Brooches, rings and necklaces all make the plunge, but most notably a gold rosary with Jesus replaced by a skeleton. Deliciously godless, gauche and goth though it is, we'll stick with the belt buckle seen here with a comparatively sedate embedded cross. The full range of oddities ($180 - $560), as well as the men's fashion line, can be found at the Number (N)ine store in New York, 431 Washington Street, 212-431-4397.
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Opening in the heart of Williamsburg—as if the Brooklyn hood needed another irresistible little shop—is In God We Trust, cheekily named after the motto on all U.S. currency. And we'll admit, we're sold. The cabinet-like boutique specializes in local designer garb (Yoko Devereaux, M. Carter), vintage clothing and assorted antiques. Above all, however, it's a showcase for owner Shana B. Tabor's eponymous jewelry line. The twenty-something FIT grad had been selling her magical necklaces—made of peculiar found charms like unicorns, little girl heads, hearts, daggers, pistols and even her best friends' real teeth—at various New York stores, but her growing following warranted a space of her own, which will also carry Tabor's vintage-inspired clothing line. Given the never-ending craze for all things charm-y and vintage, we think In God We Trust is right on the money. 135 Whyte Avenue, 718-388-2012. -SA

Hang onto your motherboards and surf on into Aloharag.com. Eschewing Hawaiian prints for high fashion, the eclectic Honolulu-based online (and offline) shop has an array of attire to quench your summer's every sartorial whim. Feeling haute? Choose among Balenciaga, Comme des Garçons and Chloé. Feeling bored? Get out of the rut with Bernhard Willhelm, Hussein Chalayan and Martin Margiela. Feeling adventurous? Sample an assortment of up-and-comers like Al Bini, Alex B and Sacai. And since the actual boutique is located in Hawaii—the nation's southernmost state—the merch is already selected with temperature in mind, so you're sure to look sharp without breaking a sweat. Now doesn't that taste better than a mouthful of salt water? -Carolyn Martins Bonilha