Billy Reid (fashion designer)

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This article is about the fashion designer. For articles about other persons named Billy Reid, see Billy Reid (disambiguation).

Billy Reid is an American fashion designer. His clothing is known for its classic styles in high quality fabrics, but with unusual accents, self-described as "low-fi Southern-bred luxury".[1]

Early life and education[edit]

Reid grew up in Amite, Louisiana,[2] just south of the Mississippi border.[3] He helped his mother operate a women’s clothing boutique located in his grandmother’s home. Reid's hobbies included outdoor activities in the surrounding Southeast Louisiana wetlands.[1] Reid attended Southeastern Louisiana University. Later he attended the Art Institute of Dallas and studied fashion design and merchandising. While still at the Art Institute, he started working for Saks Fifth Avenue. After Saks he worked for 6 years at Reebok International, travelling across the globe for the first collections of Australian golfer Greg Norman.[3] He later did freelance design for Fruit of the Loom, Neiman Marcus, and J. C. Penney.[3]


Reid launched his men's collection under the William Reid label in March 1998; his women's collection launched a few seasons later.[4] Legendary civil rights photographer Charles Moore shot the first photos for the brand.[5][6] He received the CFDA Best New Menswear Designer award in 2001.[7]

Economic effects arising from the September 11 attacks forced him to close the business in Spring 2002, and Reid then moved to Florence, Alabama, his wife's hometown.

Reid's new business model built up a small namesake chain of shops which reflected his "personality and his aesthetic" - loaded with antiques, family heirlooms and reclaimed architectural materials; they "took on a very personal, warm and hospitable environment."[1]

His company headquarters is still in Florence, Alabama in a historic bookstore. Downstairs is his flagship shop and upstairs is his design studio. The brand operates a total of 13 directly-owner stores.[8] The stores have an atmosphere of faded elegance: well-worn chairs and carpets, antique chandeliers, mounted animals, and antique apothecary cabinets.[9] Reid has said: "We're based in Alabama and work in New York; It's the balance of those two worlds that our aesthetic is about."[10]

The brand is sold in Saks Fifth Avenue, Neiman Marcus, Nordstrom, and Bloomingdales in the US, and Takashimaya in Japan.

Actor Daniel Craig wore Billy Reid in a scene in Skyfall

Actor Daniel Craig wore the Billy Reid Bond peacoat in the 2012 film Skyfall,[11] which exposed the brand to a wider audience. [12] The coat was named after Bond Street, the location of the brand's flagship store in New York City.[12] In Spectre, actor Ben Whishaw as Q wore the Billy Reid Astor Coat.[13][14][15]


Reid hosts an annual festival of music, art, fashion, food and drinks in Florence, AL called Shindig, which started as an informal gathering of close friends and was held for the 8th year in late summer 2016.[16] That year, attendees included musician Jack White,[17] musician Alison Mosshart of The Kills, model Matthew Mosshart,[18] the band Dawes, Tony Award winning actor Alex Sharp,[19] musician John Paul White and The Watson Twins, jewelry designer Pamela Love, Chef John Besh, Chef John Currence, Master Brewer Roy Milner of Blackberry Farm Brewery, former Bloomingdales men's fashion director Josh Peskowitz, and designer Natalie Chanin of Alabama Chanin.[16]


Each season the brand debuts a line of K-Swiss/Billy Reid sneakers.[20][21]

Reid, Derek Lam, Reed Krakoff, and Simon Doonan form the advisory board for the Cadillac/CFDA Retail Lab mentorship program, which provides a $75,000 grant along with business development, marketing, and PR assistance for six up-and-coming designers annually.[22]

Retail locations[edit]

Billy Reid monobrand stores are located in:

Awards and honors[edit]


  1. ^ a b c Billy Reid on Facebook
  2. ^ Justin Abbott, Meet the Designers: Billy Reid AUGUST 19, 2013
  3. ^ a b c Steel Magnolia: The rugged charm of Southern fashion’s prodigal son, Billy Reid Rhapsody Magazine
  4. ^ About
  5. ^ Remembering Our First Shoot November 4, 2014
  6. ^ RACHEL DODES, Designer Fashions a Comeback Without the Usual Pattern THE WALL STREET JOURNAL, Feb. 9, 2006
  7. ^ a b c Council of Fashion Designers of America, Billy Reid Accessed 6/17/2016
  8. ^ Times Daily Reid wins designer award 2010/02/13
  9. ^ Fashion New York Times 2009/02/19
  10. ^ The Shortlist: Billy Reid Elle Decor, October 2013
  11. ^ James Bond Gets His 'Bama on in Skyfall Thanks to Billy Reid, Matt Sebra, October 18, 2012
  12. ^ a b JAKE WOOLF, How James Bond's Peacoat Changed Billy Reid's Business, GQ Magazine November 5, 2015
  13. ^ Billy Reid Astor Coat
  14. ^ Matt Bell, GET PERFECT JAMES BOND STYLE IN JUST TWO COATS, November 6, 2015
  15. ^ David Zaritsky November 4, 2015
  17. ^ Daniel Kreps, Jack White Plays in Alabama Celebrity Baseball Game Rolling Stone August 27, 2016
  18. ^ Jack White, Alison and Matthew Mosshart And More At The Billy Reid Shindig No. 8
  19. ^ Billy Reid’s Southern-Charm Shindig
  20. ^ K-Swiss Billy Reid Collection
  21. ^ Mikelle Street, Billy Reid Wants to Take His Shindig Festival On the Road 03/22/16
  22. ^ Nicholas Tamarin, Gensler Collaborates with Cadillac and CFDA on New York Flagship June 1, 2016
  23. ^ New York Magazine Best of New York 2009 • Best Men’s Store
  24. ^ And the Winner Is… February 12, 2010
  25. ^ GQ names Billy Reid Best new menswear designer in America February 2010
  26. ^ Billy Reid wins 2010 CFDA Huffington Post
  27. ^ Marc Karimzadeh, Billy Reid Named CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund Winner Women's Wear Daily November 15, 2010

See also[edit]