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Designer Alexa Galler of Eighteenth on Making the Basic Tee 'Unbasic'

Courtesy of Ecco Domani

Among the handful of talented winners of the 2012 Ecco Domani Fashion Foundation, we've taken a special interest in young designer Alexa Galler. Her collection Eighteenth is packed with wearable jersey basics and interesting takes on the traditional t-shirt, many tricked out with asymmetrical hemlines and daring cutouts.

So why use one closet staple as the building block for an entire brand? "I like taking one concept and seeing how far I can push it," she told me at a celebratory breakfast for the Ecco Domani award winners last week. "It's all about taking a classic and changing it. I want to make the basic 'unbasic.'"

With their unconventional cuts, Alexa's tees are certainly anything but ordinary. But when we asked the designer to name three styles of t-shirts she thinks every woman should own, the winner barely hesitated. "A black T-shirt dress and definitely a long, ribbed tee dress you can either wear pulled down or bunched-up. Plus one in classic white."

Pick up some Eighteenth pieces for yourself here. Most cost less than $100!

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