Michael Halpern is a London-based designer whose label Halpern, with its distinctive sequinned designs, has experienced rapid commercial success since launching in 2016. After just one collection, the label was picked up by Bergdorf Goodman, MatchesFashion and Browns.
Halpern’s disco-inspired aesthetic was honed at Central Saint Martins, where he presented his MA graduate collection at London Fashion Week in early 2016. The collection caught the attention of Donatella Versace , who recruited him shortly after to consult for the atelier’s couture collections, where he continues to work alongside his own label.
“When I saw Michael’s work, I immediately picked up the phone to get in touch with him,” Versace told T magazine. “I never saw anything like it before. His sense of colour is brilliant; his craftsmanship is incredible.”
US-born, Halpern graduated from Parsons School of Design in 2010, going on to work as a design assistant for J. Mendel and Oscar de la Renta before moving to London to complete his studies.
Halpern is inspired by his mother’s stories of New York in the 1970s. "My mother used to be at Studio 54 wearing sequins," he told AnOther magazine. "I think there’s a level of fearlessness that’s been lost with just wearing a nice dress... I want my friends to be in a bar wearing a pair of sparkling trousers, or wearing a tiny mini dress, and I want them to feel perfect."
“It is alarming that a star can be born before he even has his first selling collection on a runway in these insta-times,” fashion critic Sarah Mower told The New York Times. “But I am very hopeful Michael’s character means he will be able to go slowly and size his business the way he wants it to be.”