CUUPCreates: Friends of Form On the Power of Uniformity

There’s power in clean lines--and Jordy Murray and Nora O’Neil should know. The duo behind one of New York’s most influential up-and-coming design collectives, Friends of Form, provides a study in uniformity not only in their work but in their day-to-day. Here, the duo preaches the gospel on the strength in simplicity.
CUUPCreates: Friends of Form On the Power of Uniformity

Working as a model, you're constantly inundated with novelty. On set, you're always shooting the new season's styles, which don't come out for another six months. By the time they surface, they're old news & the cycle continues. No matter how little you may truthfully care, there is an innate pressure to demonstrate that you're constantly at the peak of relevancy within the industry. But as a [design] collective, we're doing less, going to fewer places. We feel like that's affected our relationship to trend & to comfort. In many ways, we think it has helped rid our closets of 'maybes' and 'for special occasions only.'

Jordy wears the Balconette in Salt and Highwaist in Salt

Moving from fashion to furniture naturally shifted us to a more uniform style of dressing. Having always been inspired by the strength and simplicity of menswear, there was still a real emotional evolution that happened in our collective personal style once we started working with our hands. We've streamlined our wardrobes, sporting baggier pants, and more practical footwear. We've traded in pliancy for structure and have never felt sexier or more like ourselves. Besides the obvious concern with ‘functionality’ while schlepping around & polishing furniture, we believe in purposeful design. Functional objects & elevated basics that confidently display as art. Wearing less variety has forced us to focus on classic, high-quality goods, including our base layer. 

It's the things we do every day that should be treated with the most care. Things that are ritualistic, like eating. Underwear is the building block for every outfit. It's something you wear every day, even if you're only going as far as the couch. We believe that the things we do every day should still be done with mindfulness and attention. It's easy to slip into autopilot and have the foundations of your day-to-day relapse into an unconscious habit. However, taking pride in how you look and feel is an important part of self-identity. Having a strong, reliable formula for dressing has provided a sense of comfort and security amidst all the chaos. Perhaps we are clinging to what little order and sense of control we have left, but it helps to maintain a routine. 

Jordy wears the Balconette in Espresso; Holding the Balconette in Black

That being said, it’s oh-so-very Friend of Form to start with something classic and look to add an element of playfulness, to embellish it, or fuck it up a little bit. We believe that’s what sets us apart from other curators and resellers, our vision for personalization. In both fashion & furniture, once you have a good foundation, you are afforded the freedom of play. We love incorporating peaks of bright color & texture into the foundational pieces you have to live with. Like a candy-colored bra under a sheer white t-shirt or a baby blue suede sofa. Style that doesn't take itself too seriously.

SO, WHO DOES UNIFORMS BEST?

Jordy Murray: I love painters in their all whites--something about that uniform feels very fresh. However, I love 80's Cindy [Crawford] off-duty, and Fran Lebowitz always looks exceptional. People look best when they are wearing the clothes, not the other way around.

Nora O’Neil: I'd have to say Julia Roberts circa 1990. We all know how iconic she looked at the Golden Globes in her oversized suit. Another woman I'm enchanted by is Marta Cygan. She embodies everything fun and femme. I try to take that advice from her: Incorporating the classic looks I love with unusual modern design and color.   

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