Business of Fashion

On digital fashion weeks, craft and context



Loewe SS21 menswear

I’m catching up on the ss21 menswear collections that designers have been producing during lockdown.

An early trend is for three-dimensional or heavily crafted pieces and those with intricate surface decoration. Collaborations with artisans are another ‘thread’ to a brand story that designers can weave, showing support for their craft, or putting the spotlight on their own pattern makers.

Two standout videos I’ve enjoyed – Berluti and Loewe. Both feature their designers discussing the thought and making process of their collections. Berluti SS21 especially comes to life with Kris van Assche talking to ceramic artist Brian Rochefort about colour, patina and design. It really makes you appreciate true luxury. (Watch it here.)

Below: Berluti SS21

Berluti ss21
Berluti ss21


Berluti ss21

Meanwhile, Jonathan Anderson sent out miniature ‘shows in a box’ to the press who were watching the ‘shows’ from home. This is what they do with influencers. Send visual toys for them to dutifully display on their Instagram. The press obediently followed suit, promping followers to go to the website and view.

Anderson’s Loewe men’s SS21 collection is beautiful without the ‘noise’ of show-biz. He flagged basket craft, shibori techniques and tapestry, which have been translated into architectural shapes that were displayed on mannequins in a quiet studio setting. It works well, but better for having the accompanying explanation. The trench coats and shibori pieces are my favourites, along with the bags. I actually thought this was the women’s pre-collection rather than men’s, which goes to show that gendered clothing is kinda pointless. (Watch the video here.)


Below: Loewe SS21 menswear

Loewe SS21 menswear




Loewe SS21 menswear
Loewe SS21 menswear

I wonder if it was a huge anti-climax for the designers pressing the go-live button on their content compared to the headlines and air kisses of Fashion Week? Or if they did it on a Zoom call with their team?!

Another question is how trends will translate to the consumer. As we’ve seen before, when designers design clothes to be viewed by a screen, they go for bright colours and statement makers. But as shoppers have less money to spend and fewer places to go in the coming months, will they want these bold pieces, or functional classics? Perhaps by spring When All This Is Over, we’ll be gagging for colour and excitement again. For now, my guess is we’ll see a similar pattern as before; statement pieces for ‘runway’, and the more wearable versions for retail.

WORDS: Disneyrollergirl/Navaz Batliwalla
IMAGES: Berluti; SS21 Loewe men’s 2021
NOTE: Most images are digitally enhanced. Some posts use affiliate links and PR samples. Please read my privacy and cookies policy here

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The Noah Noodle Shop, Osaka



Noah Noodle Shop Osaka

I stumbled upon these snaps on Instagram. The preppy-street brand Noah just opened the Noah Noodle Shop in Osaka, Japan and isn’t it a beauty!

It’s a mighty tough time for physical retail in the world and Lord knows Japan has had its problems this year (don’t mention the Olympics), but this is a little slice of optimism in all the doom. (more…)



Anti-racism real talk



Jeanie Annan-Lewin

Some of the most honest conversations around racism in the fashion and beauty industries are happening on IGTV.

I recommend Susie Bubble’s three-part conversation with stylist Jeanie Annan-Lewin, which answers the question of why so many black fashion professionals are freelance. (more…)



The editors’ exodus



Leandra Medine Manrepeller By Hunter Gatti

Phew, the list of media founders and editors ‘stepping down’ in the wake of racist misconduct gets longer by the hour.

This week we saw Leandra Medine ‘step back’ from Man Repeller, Refinery29 editor in chief Christene Barberich step down from the company she co-founded, Stephen Gan parting ways with Elle, and Condé Nast VP of video Matt Duckor exit the company. (more…)