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Aug 18

The Label Poser Offers Up Martial Arts–Quality Clothes With an Intergalactic Edge

Model Frank Nadolny first captured our hearts and Instagram feeds with his wild Y2K look, as well as posing for Zayn Malik’s merch and Alexander Wang. Now, the alt heartthrob can add designer to his résumé. Nadolny and his hometown friend Steve Crispin have launched the micro-label Poser. The pixel-fused tie-dye clothing is a peek into the duo’s hyperactive minds. The pieces come in leggings and shirt sets, in manic hues and prints like nuclear green with highlighter yellow blotches (“It’s a picture of the neurological pathways in the brain,” says Nadolny), while a mouthwash-blue shirt boasts what resembles an apocalyptic firestorm (“an explosion”), and a third shirt is an on-acid smattering of dots (“particles, cosmic particles”). All together, the three designs conjure up into one metaphysical meaning. “It is the events that lead to human life, like the big-bang theory, the particles in the air, and the spinning of planets,” says Nadolny

The launch of Poser came at the perfect time for Nadolny. He had met his design partner, Crispin, a little over three years ago just after graduating high school. According to Nadolny, the two gravitated toward one another being the only “weirdos” in their small desert town of Palmdale, California. “I went to this party and there was this dude with crazy hair and cowboy boots and I started talking to him,” says Nadolny of Crispin. A few months ago, the two were approached by the Los Angeles–based creative collective Other People’s Children (OPC). At the time, Nadolny had been sketching logos and designs on his own, as well as designing and tagging with Crispin. Impressed with their work, OPC helped launched what is now Poser.


Steve Crispin and Frank Nadolny

Photo: Courtesy of Gabbriette Bechtel for Poser

While the label certainly has more of an intergalactic-meets-Zen feel, the materials boast a hard edge. They are manufactured by Newaza, the same company that produces the high-quality gear for ripped fighters in mixed martial arts and jiujitsu, two sports where a flashy, self-expressive athletic uniform is the norm. Poser’s work with Newaza gave the label its first gig: Nadolny and Crispin have designed the uniforms for the U.S. team participating in the United World Wrestling 2018 Grappling World Cup in Kazakhstan that was held this past weekend. (For the uninitiated, the event is the Super Bowl of wrestling.) For Nadolny, while the sports are a bit foreign to him, he considers the fighters to be “just as much artists as anyone else.”

While Nadolny’s new age philosophy on style and his newly launched label is a bit poetic, it’s also poignant. “We believe that style is one of the best ways that people can express themselves. You just do it every single day and you are creating something for people to look at,” says Nadolny. “Every day, you wake up and you paint a picture on yourself with clothes.” Looks like Poser’s clothing might as well be worth a thousand words then.


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