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Kyle with his latest Future Lovers collection in The Collective West. (Photo: Craig Barritt/Getty Images)

Featured Article

The Orange Velvet Shirt Was A Hit

Kyle Smith and Future Lovers of Tomorrow

Lovers of Today is a bar at 132½ East 7th Street in NYC. A little known haunt with a great name, it inspired Taylor Swift’s album, “Lover.”

It also stuck in Kyle Smith’s mind after he went there for drinks. Then one night at 2 a.m. he thought, “Future Lovers of Tomorrow!” (The writer’s exclamation point, not his.)

“The name Future Lovers of Tomorrow (FLOT) is looking to the future, and I love ‘lovers,’ it’s catchy and cute,” he explains, “I’m a really optimistic person and want my clothing to reflect my personality.”

So it does.

Launched in the pandemic, when we all swathed ourselves in fleece while waiting patiently for news from the outside word, Kyle’s first collection was “sportier, more athletic, cozier things like nylon trousers” and a super-soft hoodie. The reasonable price point makes each piece roughly the price of a tank of post-quarantine gas.

The collection did well - better than he thought it would - and many styles sold out.

With an aesthetic honed from years of working at Prada and edgy London-based All Saints, Kyle - who looks like one of his models - wanted his clothes to be urban chic, wearable, and stand-out. He moved here in 2020 with his boyfriend, designer Christian Siriano, and during these two years, FLOT has maintained its urban chic while “the new collection has a beach-y coastal vibe inspired by Westport.”

Collections have included popular pieces like a disco orange velvet top (“a dramatic statement piece that sold really well.”) and one of his favorites, the sandstorm top (“I sold out of it right away and couldn’t make any more because I couldn’t find more fabric.”) Though he admits, “I never know what’s going to be a hit."

His ideal customer? Harry Styles and Taylor Zhakar Perez. Until then, FLOT shoppers hail primarily from Connecticut. “My brand has resonated with a lot of men around here; they don’t like Macy’s or the mall,” he says. “Guys want to support a local artist and want to feel cool in their clothing.”

Like all artists (and editors of local magazines), Kyle concedes it’s tough putting your work out there for all to judge.

So far, however, people really dig the threads he’s creating and putting out there for all to wear.

  • Kyle with his latest Future Lovers collection in The Collective West. (Photo: Craig Barritt/Getty Images)
  • Future Lovers Pop-Up in Norwalk.
  • Kyle in a bestselling velvet shirt.
  • Kyle and Lisa Watkins in Future Lovers of Tomorrow.
  • Cozy hoodie. (Photo: Shane LaVancher)
  • (Photo: Shane LaVancher)
  • FLOT Tee (Photo: Shane LaVancher)
  • Striped Cabana shirt and shorts, summer 2022 collection. (Photo: Shane LaVancher)
  • Tee from summer 2022 collection. (Photo: Shane LaVancher)
  • Popular Emerald Sailor Knots shirt from summer 2022 collection. (Photo: Shane LaVancher)
  • Future Lovers of Tomorrow in The Collective West. (Photo: Leandro Justen)
  • Kyle with Katie Holme at The Collective West opening. (Photo: Leandro Justen)
  • The hot orange velvet shirt. (Photo: Shane LaVancher)