78 posts tagged "Comme des Garcons"
As we’re sure you saw, the 2014 CFDA Award nominees and honorees were announced last night during a cocktail fete hosted by Nadja Swarovski and CFDA president Diane von Furstenberg at the Bowery Hotel. During the soiree, it was revealed that Tom Ford and Raf Simons will both receive honors, and Alexander Wang, Marc Jacobs, and Joseph Altuzarra will duke it out for the Womenswear Designer of the Year title. (See the full list of nominees here.)
While the news that director John Waters would be hosting was pretty great, we were particularly thrilled to learn that Hood by Air—the streetwise anti-establishment luxury line whose Fall ’14 show featured old-school voguers—was nominated for the Swarovski Award for Menswear. It seemed to signify that the brand, which Style.com’s Maya Singer recently dubbed the most exciting thing happening in New York right now, had finally cracked, well, the establishment. “When you put commentary out there, you hope that people realize what’s going on and like your take,” offered designer Shayne Oliver. “I’m glad that they’re actually listening,” added the talent, who was just back from Paris, where he had presented his collection to a panel of judges during the penultimate round of competition for the LVMH Prize for Young Fashion Designers. “We’ve been having some really cool meetings in Paris,” he later hinted. “I think there might be some European moves coming in the future.”
Tim Coppens, also just back from the LVMH event, stuck around for some revelry and received a nomination for the Swarovski Menswear honor, as well. “I’m excited,” he said. So excited, in fact, that he’s already started thinking about the June 2 awards ceremony. “What I’ll wear was actually the first thing that went through my head,” he laughed, adding that he’ll probably design something to don to the affair. Creatures of the Wind’s Christopher Peters, who, along with partner Shane Gabier, is up for the Swarovski Award for Womenswear, also pondered his ceremony attire. “I don’t have any formal clothes that don’t have food on them, so I might have to go shopping,” he deadpanned. “Last year, I wore this really insane Comme des Garçons jacket with embroidered music notes down the sleeves. I loved it more than anything, and then I wore it to a wedding in Texas and everyone thought I was with the band. So it was perfect.” When asked whether he was nervous about the competition, Peters replied, “We both feel extremely honored to be nominated, but we’re always nervous. About everything. I’m kind of, like, constantly panicked, so this is no different than my normal state.” Considering most of the designers in attendance last night were just back from sales in Europe and already working away on their next collections, we have to assume that Peters isn’t alone.
It’s been over ten years since Irene Albright first opened the doors to the Albright Fashion Library—the more than 15,000-dress-, 7,000 shoe-strong collection of contemporary couture, ready-to-wear, and accessories now housed in a massive 7,000-square-foot loft at 62 Cooper Square. “Irene was working with KCD and saw that people were running around chasing clothes, and she just decided to start buying [important pieces],” recalled the Library’s creative director, Patricia Black. “Eventually, people would come to her saying, ‘Oh, do you still have that sweater? Can I borrow it?’”
Today, after a decade functioning as a sort of dream closet for fashion insiders, the Library is feting its history, as well as the incredible individuals who have pulled from its continually evolving archive, with Albright Goes to School, an exhibition in partnership with the Fashion Institute of Technology and MAC Cosmetics that opens this evening at the Museum at FIT.
“I wanted to celebrate Irene, the Library, the stylists—the people who were working on the inside—the shakers and tastemakers,” said Black. “Without them, we wouldn’t have what we have in terms of this colossal space just packed from floor to ceiling with clothes.”
The show—a first look debuts here—features individual looks that ten stylists (June Ambrose, Paul Cavaco, Catherine George, Tom Broecker, Freddie Leiba, Lori Goldstein, Kathryn Neale, Mary Alice Stephenson, Kate Young, and Patti Wilson) created using iconic wares from the Library. A Tom Ford goat hair jacket layers over a Comme des Garçons tank in Goldstien’s look; Balmain is mixed with Givenchy and the artist’s own choker and face mask in Leiba’s; and Patti Wilson utilizes a Lanvin body harness to sex up an otherwise high glamour Yves Saint Laurent and J.W. Anderson combo.
There’s a rich history to the institution, and Black, Museum at FIT director and chief curator Valerie Steele, and set designer Stefan Beckman were tasked with expressing that through a tight narrative. “There are some incredible stylists who pulled these outfits, but they each have their own different story,” related Beckman, who described the installation as a “gritty fire escape urban idea.”
Steele added that the Museum’s interest in the exhibition stemmed, in part, from a desire to champion stylists. “People tend to think, Oh, designers make fashion. So it was important to be able to bring in stylists and show that they also have a really important role in putting looks together.”
The ten ensembles will be on display through March 31. The show marks the beginning of a greater collaboration between FIT and the Albright Fashion Library. “Irene is such an eclectic collector of everything from fashion to art to houses to people. So who knows what she’s going to start collecting next and where we’re going to take that,” suggested Black. “[But] I’m excited about the beginnings of seeing how we get to work and inspire the new generation of kids who dream of becoming the next designer, visual director, creative director, fashion editor, stylist, or costume designer. I’m hoping that we can lend a little bit of light to them in this moment.”
Since launching her line in 2010, New York-based designer Zana Bayne has been blurring the lines between clothing, accessories, and bondage-tinged harnesses at warp speed. Fresh off her New York fashion week debut, she jetted to Paris, her home away from home, to present her collection to buyers.
“The whole city is black and gold. When I got back to Paris, I thought, Oh, so that’s where this collection came from,” said the raven-haired designer of her Fall ’14 outing, Ornamentalist. The lineup was inspired by fifties-era images from L’Officiel and featured black and croc-embossed cowhide and gold embellishments.
Belts became bras, or were elongated to look like skirts, sometimes with extreme accentuated waists. Some pieces were adorned with tassels, big buckles, or extra rivets, and a lingerie feel was created via elastic details and garter belts.
While in Paris, Bayne welcomed Rei Kawakubo to her showroom—Bayne’s leathers are currently sold at Comme des Garçons in New York, and she’s preparing for a project with London’s Dover Street Market in the fall. Bayne’s wares, which are priced between $150 and $1,500, are also carried by such stockists as Opening Ceremony, Selfridges in London, and Paris’ Mise en Cage.
Bayne aims to clothe more than just fashion’s edgy avant-garde. In fact, the ambitious 25-year-old, who has crafted pieces for both Prabal Gurung and Lorde, is aiming for sartorial world domination. She is expanding her handbag line and splitting her collection into two: the handcrafted runway range Zana Bayne Collection, and Zana Bayne Originals, which will offer seasonless pieces from the archive.
“It’s not just for the cool kids. There are pieces for all sorts of silhouettes. There are garter belts, full-body pieces, and really delicate items as well,” she explained. “I like to make sure there’s a variety.” Bayne hopes there’s a little something in her collections for everyone—even for her dream client, Michelle Obama.
“We had to start with the basics,” explained FIT graduate student and curator Kristen Haggerty. She’s talking about the origins of the university’s just-launched exhibition, Beyond Rebellion: Fashioning the Biker Jacket, a study of the motorcycle jacket’s evolution from a utilitarian Schott Bros. basic, to a symbol of post-WWII rebellion, to the modern-day fashion staple. “The first Perfecto was made in 1928 and was sold by Harley-Davidson—it’s really what everyone thinks of when they think of a biker jacket,” said Haggerty, gesturing to a 1980 replica of the late twenties belted classic with an exposed zipper. “Yes, it’s a very stylish garment, but every one of those elements means something.”
The show, which opens with an in-depth examination of the iconic Perfecto, combines documentary photography, press clippings, and a tightly curated collection of original pieces to shed light on the now 80-some-year history of the moto. Wares by Helmut Lang, Rick Owens, and a particularly memorable tutu moto jacket from Comme des Garçons’ Spring 2005 outing display the many ways in which fashion designers have appropriated and interpreted the garment. “Over the years, the Perfecto became something much more than a utilitarian biker jacket,” Haggerty told Style.com. “There were times when it was pretty subversive. Modern designers [have also] really gone above and beyond. It’s a garment that can exist in two different places at the same time, and have meaning for both of them.” All one needs to do is browse a rack at Versace, Chloé, Balmain, or Saint Laurent to see what she’s talking about. The exhibition, however, will help you understand and, dare we say, appreciate it.
Beyond Rebellion will be on view at The Museum at FIT, Tuesdays through Fridays, through April 5.