East London celebrates their 20th anniversary with digital showcase

22.09.2020 | Blog , Fashion | BY:

Last weekend Fashion East celebrated the twentieth anniversary of their multi-designer showcase, commemorating their work with 144 designers & brands and innovators of British fashion. 

Looking back over twenty years of helping London’s best designers is wild! I’m incredibly grateful I’ve been able to do what I love doing best. I wouldn’t change a thing. It is an honour to get to work with and present these four fabulous talents this season. I am in awe of their visions, creativity, optimism and the resilience they have shown throughout these difficult circumstances, ’ commented Fashion East Founder Lulu Kennedy.

For the occasion , in light of the current social distancing measures, the house proceeded with this year’s SS21 showcase with a digital exhibit with a roster of four designers including up and coming names like MAXIMILIAN, GOOMHEO,  Nensi Dojaka & Saulnash, each of whom brought something new to the table. 

Trinidadian designer Maximillian pulled on his cultural heritage with a collection that referenced Trinidad & Tobago’s annual carnival that was born from a resisistance of Eurocentric traditions following their emancipation in 1834. The collection visualised a contemporary evolution of some of the key dresses of the era including starched Jean-Baptiste Belley styled white cravats made into keyhole halter tops paired with low-slung waist pants and micro miniskirts.  He paid homage to contemporary carnival costumes through details like hammered silk skirts trimmed with goose boots feathers, bralettes cut with harnessed backs & custom headpieces made by Nasir Mazhar. The collection was a celebration of Caribbean heritage and modern black identity which was also reflected in the way it was presented, which was a majestic shooting in collaboration with photographer Rafael Pavarotti & stylist Ib Kamara. 

On her second showcase with Fashion East, designer GOOMHEO took on an alternate view from her last perspective of flourishing romance for a sensuous vouyeristic timbre. She presented a collection influenced by the erotic paintings of German artist Paul Wunderlich. She translates his visions of the nude female figures with to a curvilinear heavy draped female with silk chiffon sashes , roll neck crop tops & low waistband. She created a hide and peek effect with each piece, exploring what it means to be watched and be the subject of ones attentions. 

On a similar note, designer Nensi Dojaka played with abstract shapes and shades around the female body. “The lightness of movement I witnessed in a Sylvie Guillem ballet at Sadler’s Wells came to mind. During lockdown from the peace of my studio, I also had the opportunity to explore the art of draping,” Dojaka explained.

The collection was composed of new capsules of swimwear, body wear and long evening dresses. Backless bodysuits , dresses and swimsuits made in lycra, with different shades of black, caramel , and sepia with sheer chiffon, stretch silk , jersey, tulle and organza. For a playful interpretation, the designer also collaborated with photographer Harley Weir and stylist Francesca Burns for a series of 12 images. 

Saul Nash’s third collection with Fashion East is his Spring/Summer 21 collection entitled Flipside which he created around the qualities of movement, function and transformation. 

I wanted the pieces to open up and move, with this image in my head of men spinning in space. After lockdown I took a trip to the coast, which gave me a feeling of escapism. It made me think about transformation, about shape-shifting through what we wear,”  he commented.

The collection was inspired by 1890’s dance pioneer Loie Fuller and the costumes of the Sufi whirling dervishes which led him to think how seemingly generic garments could be transformed, encouraging a sense of release. Many of the pieces literally flip, like a 3-D tracksuit which is green on one side and printed on the other, a reversible polo-shirt among others. Footwear is provided by Nike, customised by Hernan Guardamagna. Meanwhile, Saul’s shin bags are a collaboration with Raphael El Baz, and can be worn at the ankle, or alternatively on the arm.

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Saint Laurent Men’s SS21 – “No Matter How Long The Night Is”

11.09.2020 | Blog , Fashion | BY:

Earlier this week Saint Laurent presented their Men’s Spring Summer 2021 collection in a digital project curated by Creative Director Anthony Vaccarello entitled “No Matter How Long The Night Is.” The collection which is presented in video format set against the various backdrops of Paris, New York & Beijing is a unique fusion of different artistic mediums including video, augmented reality, 3D lenticular imagery, street posters, flags and many others . View the full video & collection below and on ysl.com 

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Browns Fashion in collaboration with Homecoming

01.09.2020 | Blog , Fashion | BY:

In 2018, Metallic Inc. launched Homecoming, a festival in Lagos, Nigeria combining panel talks, parties, workshops and brand activations to spotlight the influence of African music, art, sport and fashion culture around the world, bringing together up-and-coming African talent and established industry names in a celebration of creativity across the diaspora.

In the wake of COVID19, Browns Fashion have joined forces with Homecoming to present an exclusive experience of Homecoming 2020. Titled “Ni Agbaye”, meaning “in the world”, Homecoming and Browns have created what can be described as an unfolding e-zine universe, focussing on the influence that Afro culture has on global pop culture, exploring cultural exchange through the work of some of the diaspora’s most pioneering creative minds. Combining fashion editorials, online panel talks, interviews, custom artwork and in-depth think pieces from notable African publications.

Featured writing commissions will explore the exportation of African arts, culture and the impact of music by The Native, The Republic explores the disruption of narrative by African designers to carve spaces for themselves, Nigerian Gothic has created a series of collages to create new visuals with a modern guise, and the Motherlan create a photo story capturing their extended community.

Aiming to celebrate the cultural exchange of Africa with the world, there will be a physical presence through Yinka Ilori’s installation and listening takeovers in the Immersive Room by Fela Kuti and Obongjayar at the Browns East store in London, and also as ever an almighty focus on the global digital stage, with playlists from the likes of Mowalola and a focus on brand storytelling and cultural exchange from the new Nigerian brands supported online. Explore further here.

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PRADA revamps its Harrods Boutique with the launch of an exclusive new accessory

26.08.2020 | Blog , Fashion | BY:

Last weekend Prada officially announced the renovation  of their ground floor boutique at the Harrods department store in London with a transformation that aligns more with their Milanese heritage. The revamped space features a black and white chequered floor, in reference to the historic Prada store in Milan, as well as 3D covering with graphics that speak to the historic prints of the house, which are paired their signature shade of boutique green.

To mark this special occasion , the house also scheduled the launch of an exclusive Prada spazzolato leather handbag , which was first seen in their SS21 digital presentation not too long ago. Carefully crafted in spazzolato leather , the accessory comes in two styles and will be sold in black , white , orchid and aqua. 

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Twin Talks: Osaze Akil – A refreshing mix of modern & traditional black culture

14.08.2020 | Art , Blog , Fashion | BY:

Traditional renaissance art is a genre that was created with a central focus on European history, religion and identity which was mainly if not entirely centred around whiteness. However upon our recent discovery of the Atlanta based visual artist Osaze Akil’s work, we found ourselves moved by his method of re-framing some of these traditionally white narratives to include black identities, while also offering contemporary takes on themes of black divinity with influences from African cultures spirituality and fashion. His work speaks volumes in such a way where it uses different elements and smaller details that ultimately come together to tell stories that speak proudly to both modern & traditional black heritage and culture. Which is why Twin chose to sit down with the artist himself to gain a more accurate idea of the process, inspirations and aspirations behind his work. 

Tell me about your journey, how did you first start painting ? 

I’ve been painting for most of my life. As a child, my mother painted leisurely so I think I picked that up from her. I started painting for myself when I was about six or seven, but I was drawing and sketching well before that. I had all of these ideas and ways that I saw and interpreted the world, and putting them on canvas always felt like a sweet release. If I didn’t have the language [verbally], I had the language to express myself through the art I created.

Security Rising by Osaze Akil

What or who would you say is your biggest influence/s?

I have major influences that  all contribute to my art in different ways. The first would be Toni Morrison. She’s one of my favorite authors and I’ve always been drawn to the mysticism that she alludes to in her work. The idea that black people have a sort of magic, that isn’t self contained, but shared and experienced communally was always something that intrigued me. With my paintings, I definitely want them to feel magical- that there’s an inherent magic that isn’t forced, but still felt by anyone looking at the piece. Another big influence of mine is Axel Vervoordt.

He is an interior designer and art collector, and often references the energy of a space or of an object being transformative. For me, I think of “spaces” more metaphorically. I think about the spaces that black people have been provided, and have been made by us for ourselves, and how they hold the weight that they do because of the energy that we’ve brought into them. Most of the subjects in my paintings are indoors, or enclosed in some sense, which reinforces my idea of us bringing our magic and our energy into the confines of our reality and making it work for us. We’re often put in boxes, and yet we make them beautiful, exciting, and influential. 

Revolutionized Luxury by Osaze Akil

A lot of your work in many ways feel quite sacred, with some even holding biblical titles , what part does religion or spirituality play in your process ? 

I grew up in church. Although I don’t consider myself to be a fundamentalist, I’ve always felt that I am guided, protected, and supported by something much larger than myself. My belief in God is a core part of my identity, if not the most important. I feel that God has given me a gift, which is my talent, and I honor that by referencing God’s work through me in my pieces. Painting has become not only a meditative practice for me but a form of worship. I also often reflect on the importance that spirituality has held in my culture, as an African American. Since slavery, our connection to God and the way that we worship has been the foundation for a lot of ways that we operate today, intraculturally and with the world in general.  

Tignon Law by Osaze Akil

As a contemporary artist, what role would you like your work to play in modern day society ?

I feel that I’m rewriting history, and telling a new story. When walking through art museums as a child, I never saw depictions of black people being exalted, significant, worthy of comfort, or abundance. I feel that had I seen more of that growing up, I wouldn’t have lived thinking that so many positive things that we can get from life could only be afforded to me if I wasn’t who I was. I want those younger than me to have that representation, and to know that even though our past in this country started in bondage, our future can be free.

Shadrach, Meshac, and Abednego in the Fiery Furnace by Osaze Akil

What’s the part of your process that you find most exciting? 

I love when I first get an idea, and I do the pre-sketch. I sketch out my paintings on paper about 4-5 times before I actually put anything on canvas. Going through that process, being introspective, and understanding what I want to say through it is very gratifying. Also, the end when it’s completed is also a very exciting feeling.

Do you have a favourite piece of yours? 

I don’t think I’ve yet made my favorite piece. If I had to choose, it would be my “Madonna and Child” piece. We haven’t seen many depictions of Christ or the Virgin Mary as anything other than white. So, challenging that felt important to me. 

Peaceful Isolation by Osaze Akil

How was your lockdown experience? Did you find yourself more or less inspired?

I am definitely more inspired in lockdown than before. Before, there were so many distractions and interactions that I had on a daily basis that took my mind away from creating. Now, I’m forced to sit with myself, learn new things, and focus on things in different ways which automatically sparks inspiration.

Where can one purchase your work ? 

My work can be purchased on my website! osazeakil.com

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Peter Lindbergh : Untold Stories at Museum für Kunst & Gewerbe Hamburg

13.08.2020 | Art , Blog , Fashion | BY:

Earlier this year Museum für Kunst & Gewerbe Hamburg inaugurated their run of the ongoing exhibition Peter Lindbergh: Untold Stories. The exhibit features unseen work of the iconic German fashion photographer and is the first ever survey exhibition curated by Peter Lindbergh himself prior to his passing in September 2019. It celebrates the legacy of his work with a collection of 140 photographs accumulated over two years which offer an insight into his extensive oeuvre, spanning from the 1980’s the present day.

The first time I saw my photographs on the walls of the exhibition mock-up, I was startled, but in a positive way. It was overwhelming to be thus confronted with who I am,” Lindbergh explained during an interview in 2019. His famous black and white work is known for transcending their own context and giving an alternate spin on fashion photography by finding ways to not have his images centred around the fashion. 

© Peter LindberghCourtesy of Peter Lindbergh, Paris

“The exhibition allowed me to reconsider my images in a non fashion context. The presentation aims to open the photographs to different interpretations and perspectives. However, I don’t try to claim that my pictures aren’t fashion photographs, that wouldn’t be true either. I insist on the definition “fashion photography because for me that terms doesn’t mean that one has to depict fashion — photography is much bigger than fashion, it is a part of contemporary culture, ” he commented. 

The showcase is divided into three chapters, two of which are large scale installations: opening with Manifest, which offers an insightful thought provoking immersive introduction to the late photographer’s perspective of fashion photography; while the central section features never before experimental works of the photographers shown in pairs or groups; and it then closes with a film installation entitled Testament (2014) which is an unveiling of a hither unknown side of the character of the iconic image maker featuring some unexpected and emotionally moving subjects. The exhibition is currently on at the  Museum für Kunst & Gewerbe Hamburg until the the 1st of November and is also accompanied by a 320 page hardcover catalogue with 150 images and exclusive interviews with the photographer. For more information visit MKG.

© Peter LindberghCourtesy of Peter Lindbergh, Paris

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Dior Cruise 2021 – An ode to Puglia

02.08.2020 | Blog , Fashion | BY:

Just last week Dior’s Maria Grazia Chiuri presented her Cruise 2021 collection with a scenic backdrop of Lecce, Italy. The show was a celebration of the magical beauty of arts and crafts, which was set to the melodic rhythms of a cathartic dance by the La Notte della Taranta Foundation, choreographed by Sharon Eyal to the music of Paolo Buonvino

. Throughout the collection, even the silhouettes pay tribute to the Pugliese region with drawings that celebrate the beauty of nature in the region. They also all bear the motto of the workshops at the Costantine Foundation. Maria Grazia Chiuri collaborated with artist Pietro Ruffo, who paid homage to Chrisitian Dior’s iconic Dior dress from 1949, imagined a field with a constellation of wheat sheaves, while narratives of of untamed nature were transposed onto shirts and shorts. Over three months the duo produced over 250 illustrations with inspiration from the book De Florum Cultura , which was published in 1638 by Giovanni Battista Ferrari. 

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FENDI’S #MeAndMyPeekaboo ft. Chloe x Halle

30.07.2020 | Blog , Fashion | BY:

Fendi’s latest episode in their #MeAndMyPeekaboo series features LA based pop culture superstar duo Chloe x Halle. In creation of the campaign, the duo was given complete creative control to conceive the project with the creative team of their choice. 

Shot at their home in LA, the video was created with the Art Direction of Andrew Makadsi, the vision of videographer Derek and photographer Julian Dakdouk, who manage to capture the unbreakable bond between the sisters. 

For the video, they commence with a stylish breakfast accessorised with the FENDI Peekaboo bags, after which we’re treated to shots of the duos divine natural beauty as they take a dive in the pool and enjoy a day by the pool. Following this they preparing for a performance of their lates with some major hair and makeup glam. 

Throughout the video, the wardrobe features pieces of FENDI’s Pre-Fall 2020 collection styled by Zerina Akers , complemented with some of the brand’s latest Peekaboo bags including and edition with an accordion-frame shape & inside pockets offered in smooth leather or precious skins. 

The  #MeAndMyPeekaboo series began last year featuring 10 iconic women across the world which included names like Kim Kardashian, Kris Jenner and North West. Each episode includes versions of the Peekaboo bags which have been seen on the latest runways.  To shop the Peekaboo visit Fendi.

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PRADA Multiple Views SS21 – The Show That Never Happened

22.07.2020 | Blog , Fashion | BY:

Last week on the occasion of Milan Digital Fashion Week, Prada put their best virtual feet forward with a presentation entitled “Multiple Views SS21 – The Show That Never Happened.” The digital show — which is allegedly Miuccia Prada’s last solo show before the Raf Simons partnership —  took the form of a 10 minute live video, that showcase the SS21 collection interpreted through the lenses of 5 different creatives, being Terence Nance, Joanna Piotrowska, Martine Syms, Juergen Teller and Willy Vanderperre. Each artist created a film that showcased a different view of the Prada collection and at large , the Prada ideology and identity, which served as a representation of flexibility and multiplicity, in a time where many are not able to commune, a different kind of community is then established. 

Throughout the collection, this season the house opted to focus on simple garments with use, value and longevity as the key themes. The collection is constructed around the quintessence of the house of Prada, its meaning, how clothes are worn , where and why. The meaning of multiplicity and compound uses , as paradoxes through sportswear, formality, classic and futurism are explored. The collection was co-ed and for menswear the silhouette was sharp, narrow and fitted , while for women couture volumes and treatments were explored. Leathers, cottons, taffeta , nylon , and other innovative fabrics are tailored with the flexibility to tell the stories that the wearer wants them to tell. Overall the SS21 collection is a much needed dose of simplicity during a time of chaos, the type of simplicity that can bend to whatever way you choose and embrace complexity yet still avoid chaos.

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Dior SS21 Menswear – Portrait of An Artist

20.07.2020 | Blog , Fashion | BY:

For Men’s SS21 , Dior’s menswear artistic director Kim Jones shared his mic with Ghanian-Born Vienna trained artist Amoako Boafo for a collaboration which presented the fruit of a cultural conversation between the two artisans. The conversation initially began in 2019, when they met at the Robell Museum in Miami and ever since, the two have been in discussion about their love and admiration for each other’s work.

Kim Jones personally has a special love for African work as he considers the continent as home having spent years of childhood travelling across Botswana, Tanzania, Ethiopia, Kenya & Ghana which allowed him to feel a genuine connection to Boafo’s work that speaks to a contemporary African lifestyle . The artist is known for work like his Black Diaspora portraits which are an exploration of his identity and perceptions of Blackness and Black Masculinity. Aspects of these paintings are transposed onto garments with haute couture techniques. The collection used the artist’s work as base, which essentially was not only evident in the techniques used to reproduce his paintings but also through the colour palette used in the collection.  Shades of fluorescent yellow, blue, coral and green create  a delicate colour scheme while other pieces acted as a canvas for embroideries , knitwear and intarsia. The collection , as described by the house as “a reinvention of its passion for excellence through captivating dialogues between fashion and creation in all its forms, from painting to film .”

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LIMBO Magazine – A Lockdown Cultural Time Capsule

13.07.2020 | Art , Blog , Fashion | BY:

This week a new zine model entitled LIMBO made its debut which was created out of a lack of government support for the arts and creative industries during these difficult times. The LIMBO model , launched by publisher Nick Chapin (Frieze, Vice) is a community drive model with the aim of supporting out-of-work creative minds. The first issue edited by Francesca Gavin, Art Editor for Twin, Kaleidoscope, Dazed & NTS, with creative direction by David Lane of The Gourmand, features a myriad of almost 100 artists including Wolfgang Tillmans, Peaches, Collier Schorr, Tyler Mitchell, Brain Dead, Paul Noble , Georgina Johnson , Carol Bove, Honey Dijon among others who have contributed their art, ideas and humour born out of the global lockdown.

The zine is seen as somewhat of a time capsule , offering creative insight, hope , humour and vision during a time where everything seems so unsure. The publication is a 176 page book that recalls DIY magazines with a method of patchwork , created with expressive work with lo-fi techniques. The magazine also offers a non-traditional approach to publishing as all profits from advertising and issue sales will be distributed directly to the contributors and the staff who need it most. Some of whom have opted to waive their fees and agreed to allow their portions of the profits to be donated to those in need like Vivienne Westwood, Wolfgang Tillmans, Tyler Mitchell and others.  

The book is now available for purchase online limbomagazine.com 

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Browns Fashion “A Family Affair” – guest edited by Ib Kamara

03.07.2020 | Blog , Fashion | BY:

Not long ago London based boutique Browns Fashion launched an initiative entitled “A Family Affair” that celebrates different types of family like bonds. Their latest installation of this series was released today and guest edited by London based stylist extraordinaire Ib Kamara who documented his local network by exploring notions of future and community through his own lens and that of his contributors during these key moments of pause throughout the quarantine. 

For the project, Kamara tapped key figures from all corners of the creative worlds including fashion, beauty, film, music, art and gaming. Namely Musician Misha Notcutt who explores the possibility for change with her ‘Mix it Up’ playlist that also features singer-songwriter Nadiah Adulting-Gyamfi in part two. In more visually impactful explorations photographers Justin French and Elliot Jerome Brown Jr share their thoughts through photography, while Rafael Pavarotti discusses his spiritual collaboration with Ib in a video interview. Filmmaker Stephen Isaac Wilson presents a number of films inspired by collections from his favourite designers at Browns while make up maverick Daniel Sallstrom does a video makeup tutorial also made into an instagram filter. Hair Guru Virginie Moreira explores the paths towards liberation in a shoot styled by Gareth Wrighton while curator critic, and art historian Osei Bonsu is interviewed by Ib on “The Power of The Editing” in the luxury space. For the project Ib shot and styled each one of the London based contributors listed above. 

“When Browns approached me to work on a community project I immediately said yes as I wanted to celebrate some of the amazing talent that I am very humble to know and collaborate with, there are so many that I am blessed to know so it was incredibly hard to get to this list. For us to progress as people we need community as with community we can start to understand each other better, we can love each other better and we can work to build each other up – that’s the family I am part of in London. For this series, you can expect to see amazing heartfelt work from everyone contributing. I am very happy to see a body of work come together that speaks to them individually – to be able to put this out into the world is beautiful. It’s the perfect time to showcase what beauty can be cultivated when we come together and work in an equal space, a space where the colour of our skin is not determined by our brilliance, a space where everyone feels equal and able to be part of a community,” Ib commented. To view the full collaboration visit Brownsfashion.com

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Honour Underwear : The Comfort Series

30.06.2020 | Blog , Fashion | BY:

Images by Vic Lentaigne

Emerging underwear brand Honour helmed by designer Samantha Crossley recently teamed up with her director girlfriend Emily McDonald for a campaign/ video series entitled “The Comfort Series” in light of pride celebrations. The series is a three part film project where LGBTQIA+ families and couples were asked to reflect on love, comfort, growth, and what might be next in the fight for equality for all. Part one of the series sees a sweet portrayal of newlyweds Jadah Dale & Reva Gauntlett which was shot by an almost entirely queer crew during lockdown.

Jadah who is a hairstylist and Reva who’s a musician have been spending their time in lockdown playing badminton, reading books aloud to each other and hanging out with their cat Cowboy. During the video they explain how they’re looking forward to sitting out the usual partying and focusing on the true meaning of pride and how it can better serve everyone in the LGBTQIA+ community. Follow Honour to keep up with the next videos in the upcoming series. 

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“My Queer Blackness, My Black Queerness” – The Project / Fundraiser highlighting the beauty of Black Queerness

24.06.2020 | Blog , Fashion | BY:

Cover image: Black Dolls by Campbell Addy & William Ndatira

“My Queer Blackness, My Black Queerness” is an ongoing digital initiative launched by Twin’s online editor Jordan Anderson as a celebration and exploration of black queer identity. “It is a protest , a celebration that frames blackness as a polyphony, a genre or melody with a vast variety of notes & textures, denouncing both white queer racism and black queer antagonism by way art , film and literature.” The initative launched yesterday is an initiative that holds 3 aspects, the primary being a limited edition  print sale / fundraiser featuring the works of 12 photographers Tim Walker, Campbell Addy, Michael Bailey Gates, Sackitey Tesa, Hao Zeng, Daniel Obasi, Florian Joahn, Kennedi Carter, David Uzochukwu, Emmanuel Sanchez-Monsalve, Justin French & Myles Loftin who have given their interpretations of black queer identity through imagery — 100% of proceeds of which will be split between two charities centred around Black Trans Lives. The second aspect of the is a weekly updated journal, shot by photographer Damien Frost, who documents and trans / non binary people of colour from all around the world as the site provides a virtual space for them to exist and be celebrated in all their glory.

The latter aspect of the project , is a weekly film screening of filmmaker the late Marlon Riggs’ films who document the history of the Black Queer Identity within American society. The project will run for three weeks and will carry weekly updates and reminders on the MQBMBQ instagram . To discover more information, visit MQBMBQ.COM  

Gully Queens by Tim Walker

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FENDI’S Pre-fall 2020 California Sky Collection

24.06.2020 | Blog , Fashion | BY:

Following their collaboration with visual artist Joshua Vides last July , FENDI once again taps the LA- based creative in collaboration for a spree spirited Californian vibe for its Prefall 2020 collection design by creative director Silvia Venturini Fendi. For the collection Vides used his signature contemporary black and white marker style and interprets this in the form of womenswear, menswear, kid’s ready-to-wear and accessories pieces. The artist created 3D trompe-l’oeil effect by mapping the seams and edges of a range of urban and resort styles , while also giving his twist on a vibrant, whimsical floral allover motif & reworking the FENDI Stamps and the iconic FF logo.

The collection carries a wide variety of interchangeable separates including nylon windbreaker, embossed cycling shorts, satin blousons, embossed leather outerwear, sweatshirts, denim pants compact knits, printed denim pants , to even luxurious featherweight fur coats and cardigans and perforated leather jackets, all given that special splash of a tropical Californian vibe. For the accessory department , the collection did not disappoint as it includes a new version of the house’s bestseller Fendirama Women’s Sunglasses, featuring a silver metal frame and a graphic interpretation of the FENDI Stamps on the silver mirror lenses and also a new Men’s Botanical Fendi Sunglasses with an extra light white shield with the FF logo mirrored. You can find the collection in Fendi Boutiques, on  Fendi.com  or from July 1st at the California Sky Pop-Up, Harrods Men’s Piazza.

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Bianca Saunders x Joshua Woods – “We Are One Of The Same”

18.06.2020 | Blog , Fashion | BY:

For London Digital Fashion Week last weekend designer Bianca Saunders joined forces with photographer Joshua Woods for the launch of a Zine entitled “We Are One of The Same”.

Shot in New York by the photographer in collaboration with stylist Matt Holmes and model Jessica Cole, the zine explores themes of identity, community and finding a common ground in the world of social distancing. Throughout the zine, human connection is glorified in a way which urges us to appreciate small moments whenever we have the chance as Woods’ images reminds us that that which binds us together is far greater than that which divides us — a pertinent sentiment to keep in mind especially in recent time. We Are One of The Same is currently available for purchase on biancasaunders.com .

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Harris Reed – “Thriving in Our Outrage” : A Homage to The Fluid & Flamboyant

16.06.2020 | Blog , Fashion | BY:

London based designer Harris Reed recently debuted their latest graduate collection under the theme “Thriving in our outrage.” Virtually launched online via instagram and other platforms, the collection explores gestures of fluidity and flamboyance as an act of resistance.

“Do we express ourselves because we are angry ? Does outrage breed the outrageous? Without outrage for change, where does one find their strength to make a push towards difference?” Are the questions they ask themselves. The collection is an exploration of the idea of performance, opulence and self expression as a daily ritual of our modern day lives, ranging from   the possibilities of fluid bridal wear, theatricality and glamour. With strong convincing visuals created in lockdown, the designer constructs a narrative around extravagance born from a selection of inspirations tracking as far back as Henry Paget , the 5th Marquess of Anglesey — one of history’s most eccentric aristocrat who defied societal expectations by divorcing his wife, and being known for transforming his family chapel into for a location where he’d regularly entertain in gender fluid costumes while performing plays by Oscar Wilde and was later prosecuted on the grounds of homosexuality.

Reed looked towards Paget’s gendered opulence and bravery interpreted as an act of resistance that flourished into flamboyance, which could not be more current with the realities of the current times. He also took hints from the rock band New York Dolls who are known for juxtaposing traditional stage wear elements like sequins , crystals and feathers with 70s masculine tailoring.  With a digital lookbook , the designer pieced together all these key points of inspiration to create this collection of re-interpreted flamboyance channelled through the medium of every day fashion. For more info on the collection visit HarrisReed.com

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McQueen Creators NO.6 – Patchwork

12.06.2020 | Blog , Fashion | BY:

This week, British fashion house Alexander McQueen is inviting their audience to recreate patchwork using scraps of fabric found in our home with the brand’s quilt coat & suit from their AW Womenswear 2020 collection as inspiration. 

The pieces from the collection were created with inspiration by the allegorical tailor’s quilt at the St Fagans National Museum of History in Cardiff that withholds a rich history of being hand-stitched over sixteen years from 1842 by master tailor James Williams with over four and a half thousand patches. McQueen’s tutorial features a much more condensed version with a tutorial by a member of the house’s design team taking us through the process of the creation of the tailor’s quilt patchwork . 

McQueen Creators was a weekly initiative brought forth in reaction to the current global quarantine, and calls on the house’s followers to artistically engage with their favourite pieces from a selection of images shared on the McQueen instagram page. A selection of final will be published across their social media platforms. Follow the house’s social media channels for updates, and to be considered in the batch of images shared on the McQueen page, be sure to tag @alexandermcqueen and include the hashtag #McQueenCreators in your caption. 

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Twin meets the Designer of KARA in exploration of her ongoing project “KARA You Be You”

01.06.2020 | Blog , Fashion | BY:

“Now more than ever people are really looking for something that feels personal and feels human”

KARA is a brand with a human spirit at the core. Founded by Sarah Law as a reactive medium to explore her own personal identity quest, KARA – the name borne from Karaoke which in turn is Japanese for empty orchestra – looked to connect with a global community through self expression and artistic freedom. Formulating her You Be You campaign on this premise, KARA has collaborated with creatives from all over the world, from Fish Zhang in Beijing to Richie Shazam in New York to Masha Reiva in Kiev. 

“I am really trying to show all these different points of view, together”, Sarah Law states, discussing over the phone in her New York apartment the reasoning behind the breadth of talent commissioned for this 4 year photography series. Commissioning creatives from a global network, Sarah has posited her fascination with expressions of identity into her brand and subsequently in the hands of these international artists, asking them to interpret her brand and present it in their own unique way in a series of images. 

“A huge sentiment behind the brand is this aspect of community – I think it is about really trying to find people who sometimes don’t have a massive platform but have amazing work, and trying to feature them. We have commissioned different people to create pieces working from home, which has proven to be a really fun project to connect with people and learn more about them in this time.”

As COVID19 brings through isolation and subsequent yearnings for deeper connection, does KARA think that a sense of vulnerability has befallen humanity in this time?

“I think finally because of COVID19 there is more compassion – people connecting with people to see how they are doing.”

“In a world under such an intense pressure to move forward with the internet getting faster, brands are pushed to produce so much content and so many collections, we are losing sight of people’s humanness. It is interesting as in this time, I am finding people are friendlier right now, as there is this acknowledgement of what we are all going through, something that we are all experiencing.”

Delving into the four year project KARA You Be You, the breadth of talent collaborated is as wonderful as it is varied. With the initial desire to explore her own experience of being both Chinese and American at the core of the commencement of KARA, Sarah has embarked on a deep dive into our own cultivations of self, how we express ourselves, and what we choose to take from our past to define ourselves in our futures.

As the world comes to learn new ways of communicating, those with authentic voices and unique, purposeful visions will be coming out stronger; putting the creative in the hands of the people means KARA is carrying a refreshing approach through our new navigations of normal life. 

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Twin Talks: Robert Wun – the Designer sculpting the silhouettes for the power women of tomorrow

29.05.2020 | Blog , Fashion | BY:

There are many up and coming young fashion brands out there who are still in the process of navigating to find their brand voices within the industry. Some have found solace in RTW, others in menswear , streetwear etc. London based Designer Robert Wun, has already made himself into somewhat of a prodigy, having found his design knack for futuristic silhouettes and natural forms.

The LCF graduate who launched his namesake brand in 2013, offers a very fresh approach to the genre of womenswear by sculpting each piece with intention and attention to detail, using bold cuts and strong shapes to contrast with bright colours as a statement of feminine power. Each of his pieces hold a story, not just as an entire look, but rather every shoe, every hat , every blouse, razor cut skirt, every double stitch, all separately tell tales of a mystical futuristic world that leaves its audience so desperately yearning for more. His collections are a sight for sore eyes that makes one seriously lust and ponder over his vast creative capacity. Twin recently caught up with the man behind the grand desirable sculptures to discuss his process, SS20 collection and quarantine routines. 

What was the inspiration behind your SS20 collection?  Does the collection have a title ? 

The SS20 collection is named “ Orchid Mantis “

I continue to draw inspiration from the infamous female warrior Mulan, which I first introduced in the SS19 collection, the collection pays homage to the full spectrum of qualities celebrated about this legendary character who has paved the way for feminists of the modern day. Hua Mulan, her name 花木蘭 meaning flower, wood and orchid.

I decided to further explore the potential of the orchid as an inspiration in the SS20 collection, studying one of my favourite animals , the Orchid Mantis’ on  it forms its shape . a beautiful yet deadly camouflage. I have transformed that petal shape throughout the collection with a technique which allows the seams to reverse and extend out as the shape of flower petals, which is one of the main highlights of the collection.

What’s your design process like ? 

I normally will start with an image or a sketch of rough visuals from my mind, then illustrate the garments to be able to move forward technically, it always starts with the idea into one garment first.

Then afterwards it’s just hours and hours of placing different fabrics and swatches next to that illustration until I feel right. Pushing the range and transforming that first design into a full range of garments and into different looks. Lastly would be the execution in pattern, testing of fabrication and techniques. Once that first piece is physically done, I will get a clearer picture for the rest of the collection.

Your futuristic approach to silhouettes is really quite interesting , what is it that influences this ? Do you have a knack for architecture ?

I am actually more inspired by nature versus artificial architecture, at the end nature is somewhat of an architect too! 

My admiration towards nature will always be the core of my creative process, and I always believe nothing can be more original and timeless when it’s inspired by something so real and far from artificial, and nature offers a kind of beauty that humbles and motivates you, and something as raw and genuine as nature, everyone could interpret it differently.

Do you imagine that this type of eccentric silhouette is where womenswear will be heading in the future?

I like to believe the future of womenswear is a celebration of individuality, where designers can be celebrated by doing what they want and who they are and what they do best. I am always inspired by unapologetic individuals who embrace femininity in a bold and provocative way, never thought of on a mass market scale or creating an influential trend, just trying to pursue what I love and grateful for the audiences, no matter the size who supports it.

What’s your favourite fabric to work with ?

Not any in particular, as different fabrics and materials serve for different ideas and effects so it depends on the design. Although a good sturdy bonded fabric, or crease proof materials are something I always work with, as I tend to create things with a futuristic touch on finishing and sculpted silhouettes.

What’s been the most difficult part of your journey as a young designer? 

I was not fully aware of the business side of fashion at all when I first started, which makes pricing and the production side difficult to navigate, also completely oblivious to the marketing and sales side of the industry. 

Through time I have started to understand the need to learn it as a business, and the importance of asking for help and advice. I eventually got an investor two months after the Joyce launch of my graduate collection,  who helped me set up a proper business support, since then I have learned from every season as I carry on, 4 years ago I decided to become independent to look for better future partners to take this to the new level.

What’s been the most gratifying experience as a young designer?

To be able to have 100% creative control and being afforded the freedom to make mistakes. Also being able to define your own equation to navigate through the industry! I didn’t get a lot of sponsorships or awards as most emerging brands got when they first started, and those titles had become an essential to show the industry you are promising and have an “authorised” future. 

I learned that it is ok to not have a sponsored show and to carry on after being told no, and I’ve also learnt not to invest in expensive showcases which you can’t afford, but just focus on good work and good photography and let them speak for themselves, and I have been doing that ever since. Something we can easily forget as designers nowadays, is to just focus on delivering good designs and well made garments and let them speak for themselves.

I am quite grateful now when I look back that I didn’t get these opportunities, from my graduation to many programs that I also didn’t get selected at the beginning of my career, as they made me more focused on pushing creatively as a designer, and more ready as a business person too on building a solid foundation for longevity.

If you had to choose a woman in the public eye or a movie character who embodies the Robert Wun aesthetic , who would it be ?  

Dream character would be a sci-fiction character by the Wachowskis siblings or Ridley Scott, as Trinity from the matrix and Ripley from Aliens are some characters that have inspired me deeply. Or even if there was a modern day or futuristic interpretation of Mulan that would be great to design for!

I’d also love to dress a Bae Donna, Bjork, Lizzo, Yalitza Aparicio, Kelly Marie Tran, Noomi Rapace, Tilda Swinton, Rooney Mara and Rihanna etc in the future. Women who are authentic and shaping the future.

If you use a movie, a song, or a poem to define your work , what would it be ?

A movie would be Princess Mononoke by Studio Ghibli Hayao Miyazaki

A song would be Taro by Alt J

How’ve you been handling the quarantine? 

Keep sketching and draping and watching movies! It’s hard to stop even at home, especially considering that most business errands have to be put aside now, focusing on the positive note as it could be a brand new start for the SS21 collection in September, with hope that the pandemic will have passed by then.

Is there anything you’re hoping will change in the fashion system post COVID-19?  

Buying better on the consumer side and for the industry to put less pressure on creatives and allow them to design less product orientated collections. Which ultimately means what everyone’s been talking about; slowing down and having less collections=less waste and healthier mentality for the industry.

How / Where can one purchase/order your pieces ?

We will have a brand new distribution of stockists at the end of this year starting from SS21 collection.

Currently you can order directly from us [email protected] and the E-commerce will be live later this year as well on www.robertwun.com

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