For decades, Montrose has been home to artistic liberation. From the astounding wave of new technology-driven galleries to quirky vintage shops, these experimental businesses have helped to craft a cocktail every aspiring creative wants to sip from. Cypress-native brothers Saber and Samee Ahmed found solace in this eclectic neighborhood, fully aware that their visions of luxury minimalism and philosophically rooted designs would thrive there—and they were spot on.
Their high fashion concept, Glass Cypress, was right at home in Montrose. The brand specializes in reinventing artisanal menswear through free-flowing silhouettes, extravagant fabrics, and playful patterns. The new Autumn/Winter collection, Normal Conversation drops nationwide next month, and soon Houstonians will be able to add these ensembles to their wardrobe.
We sat down with Saber Ahmed to discuss Glass Cypress’s humble beginnings, the new collection’s earthy themes, and their national expansion into other retail stores.
Were you and Samee always interested in creating a joint fashion luxury brand or was this career a later pursuit?
From a very young age, my mom has always styled us in eccentric clothing. As we grew up, it challenged us to see who could build the most creative fit, which ended up being us trying to be more individualized and disposing of the burden that comes with art. I believe between my late-high-school and early-college years, we used to think a lot about what we wanted to do for the future. But once we stopped having desires, in general, is when we started being, and that’s where the creative nature took over. Our meticulousness wasn’t something from effort or a process we agreed on—it was just us being individuals in that moment, and you can’t ever work hard at being yourself.
Glass Cypress’s flagship store is such a unique one. Instead of finding or renting out warehouse space, you two transformed an older three-story home into a boutique equipped with a showroom and restaurant. How was the process in reinventing this unconventional space into a bold statement?
A lot of people thought it was crazy and ridiculous to renovate the house into a boutique. But that’s how we’ve always operated—making decisions from a completely unbiased perspective. There was just something tempting about the individuality of the space and its uniqueness. My brother’s very detail-oriented and a passionate spirit when it comes to framing environment, so retrofitting this spot was a big thing.
In 2019, the brand was selected by Flying Solo to debut a couple of pieces at Paris Fashion Week—Glass Cypress’s first runway show. What was that experience like?
It was such a blessing to have that perspective of fashion at the highest level. To be able to share that observation and scenery with our parents and friends was even more of an experience too.
What inspired you two to take a more bohemian-punk style for this new collection?
It was just a reflection of our thoughts at the time. We wanted to create a collection through an unbiased lens and highlight more detailed artisanship through hand quilting. [Hand quilting] is an intense process and, to me, incorporating this technique into this collection and future ones truly speaks volumes about our brand. When you’re doing handworking to that extent, it just has so much individuality, and it somewhat showcases how intricate and perfect small imperfections are in detailing.
With Glass Cypress moving to a national scale, what are some ways you're looking to still uphold the brand's core components?
Just continue to surround ourselves with individuals who live to furiously be themselves. Our brand is more than a couple guys designing pieces. It’s about everyone contributing a different element of individuality, creativity, and courageousness to the environment, which fuses to make us very distinct. And you get that blend when you come to [Glass Cypress’] showroom. I think it’s the people we’re privileged to work with and branching out to work with different people who could add to those elements.
Noon to 6 p.m. Sun–Mon, contact for an appointment. 1711 Indiana St. glasscypress.com