SS21

The culture of fashion: Dior SS21 menswear ‘portrait of an artist’



Dior SS21 men Amoako Boafo

Some more menswear SS21 highlights. On the maximalist craft tip, Dior hit the top notes again with a fab collab with Ghanaian artist Amoako Boafo. (See the collection video here.)

Dior’s creative director Kim Jones first met him last year during Art Basel Miami. Boafo was the artist in residence of the new Rubell Museum, opposite Dior’s fall show venue. As Jones’ artist collaborations are now a mainstay of his collections (tying in nicely with Mr Dior’s gallerist past), it made perfect sense for the two to collaborate. Jones already has a connection to Africa having grown up in the continent, while Boafo has a connection to fashion, with his fantastically wardrobed portrait sitters always dressed in attention-grabbing prints and colour combinations. (more…)



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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Into this: A major (Raf Simons-shaped) shift at Prada



Prada announces co-creative directors - Miuccia Prada and Raf Simons

I’m excited for the news that Raf Simons will be co-creative director of Prada alongside Miuccia as of April 2nd. The news was announced on Sunday, after Milan Fashion Week editors were invited to an impromptu press conference at Prada HQ.

The joint creative directorship has been positively received by the industry, although not without questions. In short, how do two equally radical and intellectual minds share the load? (more…)