Beyond Gender with & Other Stories

28.08.2015 | Blog , Culture | BY:

There’s no doubt that transgendered issues have been brought into the greater cultural conversation over the past year. While fashion has long toyed with gender fluidity and featured androgynous and trans models like Andreija Pejic in campaign imagery, no major brand has seemingly addressed gender non-conformity as much as H&M’s little sister, & Other Stories. Their new campaign not only stars trans models, Hari Nef and Valentijn De Hingh, but was produced by a predominantly trans crew, celebrating their artistry in front and behind the camera.

Representation and increased visibility is undoubtedly a good thing – it broadens perspectives and offers more opportunities for minorities to be included in a wider narrative. But there are only so much a few magazine covers and documentary specials can do, and in an industry that’s obsessed with newness – both falsely inviting and cruelly fickle – how do we make sure this isn’t another seasonal trend that disappears in six months. And in a time when the trans community still struggles with unemployment, discrimination and lack of opportunity, how much are we doing if the same creative teams get rehired to produce campaigns.

By hiring an all transgendered below-the-line talent including photographer Amos Mac (founder of Original Plumbing), stylist Love Bailey and makeup artist Nina Poon, & Other Stories empowers everyone involved to control the means of their own representation. The behind the scenes video is quick to highlight how the team bonded on set, which comes across in the campaign itself, showing the power of shared experiences. When talking to Dazed, Nef noted that prior collaborations in fashion hadn’t always entailed empathy and understanding but, “With a trans team however, it’s all there.” The campaign also raises an important question about ‘the gaze’, long associated with fashion imagery, & Other Stories asks whether, in this case, the cisgender gaze could change if a trans team produced the imagery.

Fashion dictates who does and does not get to participate in the world of luxury and beauty, but as Nef notes in the video, campaigns like this – and on a greater level, the Internet – have expanded and diversified fashion’s audience, who demand to be both represented and included. In the past year alone, Selfridges experimented with the Agender Project while a new online, unisex-only fashion platform, You Do You, launched this month promoting designers like Eckhaus Latta, Vejas and Timo Weiland, all of whom produce collections not tied to a gender binary. In the US, Target has promised to remove gender-based labels on toys, which hopefully signifies the industry is finally noticing the importance of empowering a diverse set of consumers – let’s just hope it doesn’t disappear in six months time.

Words by Alex LeRose

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& Other Stories Co-Lab Collection by Sadie Williams

14.11.2014 | Fashion | BY:

& Other Stories are no strangers to a great Co-Lab (as they like to call them), and their latest comes in the form of shimmering textures, fuzzy wools, sporty shapes and glitery details, all designed by Sadie Williams. The glitz and glamour comes just in time for the festive season, making that decision of what to wear that little less daunting.

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Twin Picks: And Other Stories

26.03.2013 | Blog , Fashion | BY:

& Other Stories is the latest venture from the Swedish company that gave us COS and H&M. “Today, a woman with a love for fashion creates her own style,” states the new brand, which is why they are providing us with the ingredients to make up our own.

What first attracted us to the site was the fact that after a few moments browsing, you might as well be lusting after someone else’s streetstyle snaps. Using a blog-like layout makes the site and inevitably the brand more accessible. Just like bloggers, who have strong opinions but don’t necessarily force those on to you like a biannual glossy might, & Other Stories is doing the same. Trends are not there to be followed; they are simply guidelines according to the Stockholm and Paris design teams.

The Regent Street store is welcoming, modern and chic. With more products that are not on the site, we urge you to pop down and have a browse. What you are bound to notice is the quality of each piece. The garments are designed to last the story of your lifetime, not just the current season.

These are Twin‘s favourite pieces from their current spring/summer 2013 collection.

Asymmetric Layered Dress, £39 & Cuff Chain Earrings, £12

Jaquard Trousers, £65 & Leather Sandals, £79

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