Here’s the latest weekly DRG STYLE INDEX ranking, a round-up of the brands currently buzzing on my radar…
1. GRENSON X NEW BALANCE REINVENT THE 576
The Grenson X New Balance men’s trainers that were unveiled at LCM get my tick of approval. They slightly remind me of when Hermes first did its ‘Quick’ trainer, an understated tan running shoe that was copied far and wide. I love that this is also a classic running shoe style; it’s my favourite 576 model reinvented in a rich Italian grade A calf-skin leather. The interesting thing about these is that they have gone back and forth between the New Balance factory and the Grenson factory (both in the UK), where skilled craftsmen work respectively on cutting the pattern (at the New Balance factory), then applying Grenson’s signature burnishing and broguing, then back to New Balance for assembling. The Grenson X New Balance 576GRB are available at the Bloomsbury and Soho Grenson stores at £300, and will be rolled out to selected retailers from 23rd January.
2. WHAT’S GOING ON AT SAINT LAURENT?
What to make of the Hedi-is-leaving-Saint-Laurent rumours? As yet, nothing has been confirmed although the rumours continue to mount. If the story is to be believed that Hedi Slimane couldn’t come to an agreement in renewing his contract (apparently, he’d like more creative control), then what does that say about the power of a designer? No-one can deny he has done an outstanding job at Saint Laurent, but can a designer be too demanding? On one hand, if he’s doing an excellent job, should he not be rewarded by giving him what he asks for and letting him carry on? Or is there a danger that the ego can become bigger than the brand? I can’t say I’m convinced by the prospect of Anthony Vacarello or Sarah Burton taking over but as always, it will be interesting to see how things play out…
3. CHARLOTTE CHESNAIS AT NET-A-PORTER
My jewellery crush of the moment, Charlotte Chesnais is now stocked at Net-a-Porter. If you were a fan of Ghesquière-era Balenciaga jewellery, then you’ll like these elegant architectural pieces from the former Ghesquière collaborator (above and below). Buy it here.
4. JUUN.J’s POST-CHAOTIC FUTURE
This season, Pitti Uomo gave its coveted ‘guest menswear designer’ slot to Juun.J, the South Korean designer who is making waves on the international stage. His collection looked at a ‘post chaotic’ future in which the traditional ideas of gender are questioned. Oversized motocross leather jackets were presented in ‘feminine’ pastels and words such as ‘Genderless’, ‘Genreless’ and ‘Limitless’ repeated themselves on knitwear and scarves. Expect to see his futuristic Hajime Sorayama-illustrated aviator jackets on the backs of Wiz, Rihanna and Kanye some day soon…
WORDS: Navaz Batliwalla/Disneyrollergirl
IMAGES: Grenson; Saint Laurent; Net-a-Porter; Dazed/Antonio Giacometti