Feeling winter creeping in on you yet? Well, just your luck, for this month, Swedish apparel heroes Acne Studios and Fjällräven have joined forces and procured your new winter’s wardrobe. The collection is unisex, multi-color and – of course – a warm tribute to Swedish fashion culture. Gifted with Fjällräven’s seasoned functionality and the vanguard fashion aesthetic from Acne Studios, it is, in other words, a clever mix.
It’s said that a picture is worth more than a thousand words. Imagine, then, having more than 1350 pictures and the motifs being models from every corner of the world, adorned in no less than fashion by Louis Vuitton. In the new coffee table book Louis Vuitton Catwalk – The Complete Fashion Collections, this happens to be just the case. The book is a celebration of 20 years of ready-to-wear collections from the historic French maison, with catwalk pictures from every ready-to-wear collection leading back to the debut in 1998 by Marc Jacobs to today’s Nicolas Ghesquière, along with portraits and introductions to each and every collection. Though it may sound a bit much, it is just enough.
One of the most exciting areas of style of recent years is contemporary hip hop. Initially marking themselves as gilded trendsetters by appropriating and subverting yuppie fashion in the 80s and 90s, rappers have always been an important voice in the development and movement of trends across the world – but their relevance suffered a dip in the 2000s, with the 50 Cent-esque bling bling aesthetic wearing itself out from the inside. But now, the new wave of hip hop are once more pushing the boundaries of fashion, as its main protagonists are frequently spotted traversing the front rows of Paris in skirts, dresses, and outré ensembles. Wiz Khalifa is one of these characters, and has spoken unapologetically about his eclectic and femme-oriented fashion choices which still seems to infuriate the highly masc industry in which he’s operating. In a rather surprising move, the North Dakota native has teamed up with Swedish sock manufacturer Happy Socks, which since its launch a decade ago has worked to re-sartorialize how we cover our ankles.
If you come anywhere near Northern Europe in the last five years, you know that the Birkenstock craze is real. Your soon-to-retire father, your driving teacher, your 8-year old niece, the guy you slept with last night: everyone is sporting a pair of the German sandals, known for their superior comfort and 70s-humanist vibes. We thank the heavens that this somehow became the acceptable shoe across the fashion, art, and media world, instead of boat shoes or Manolo Blahniks like in the 2000s. However, that’s not to say that Birkenstock is outside fashion’s crazed temporality: even a 250 year-old sandal brand can surprise with innovation. Most recently, the brand has teamed up with three notable collaborators for limited edition sandals: Colette, the bygone concept store of all concept stores; Opening Ceremony, the go-to destination for avant-garde fashion in New York; and Ms Min, the hyped Shanghai label.
The elephant is an alluring creature, one of the most majestic to traverse the globe – a plumb guardian of the forest who keeps a strictly vegan diet (not unlike fashion people on vacation!). From Dumbo to Dr. Seuss’ Horton, this giant mammal carries with it a wealth of cultural iconographies, so one could wonder why the elephant is still subject to poaching that threatens its future existence. In recent years, ambitious international task forces have made efforts to stop the global ivory trade, but even so, the elephant remains a vulnerable creature in our ecosystem. Enter Knot on my Planet, the activist campaign working to protect the habitat and future of the big-eared animals by launching high-profile partnerships with corporations and influencers in and outside of the fashion world. The name of the initiative plays on the age old act of tying knots to remember and elephants’ uncanny ability to remember; probably the only time we like to be compared to any dull-skinned giant is when getting compliments about how well we recall the past. Anyway, the latest partnership involves Spanish-Parisian luxury house Loewe, and this is where you come in.
As far as Scandinavian furniture design goes, there’s nothing more enduring and appealing than the work of Børge Mogensen. The cornerstone of the “Danish Modern” generation, Mogensen was a true visionary, maintaining a persistent search for perfect and form throughout his career across object and furniture design, which provided us with a wealth of interior classics. Most famously, he introduced the world to The Spanish Chair – a true archetype of modern furniture. Realized in solid wood and saddle leather, Mogensen conceived of this reclined, clunky, broad-framed structure on a trip to Spain in 1958, where he encountered Andalusian influences in furniture – particularly, traditional chairs with wide armrests, which proved a practical resting place for a glass or an ashtray. Presenting the chair in Copenhagen that same year with manufacturer Fredericia, it became an instant success among the Nordic Bourgeouise: so much so that 60 years later, you’ll still find it in any good home in the Nordic region. It’s contrasting elements between solid wood and leather feels more contemporary than ever, and looking around the landscape of contemporary interior design, it’s hard to play down the hype around Les Danois. To mark this victorious contribution to the canon of Danish design, Fredericia recently announced the release of a special edition of the chair featuring leather in an ambient Olive Green – one of Mogensen’s favorite hues, sourced from his archives. A swanky upgrade to a true classic, available only for a short amount of time – what’s not to love?
We admit it, we find ourselves amidst the age of Sneakers. From Balenciaga’s grim-some but alluring Triple S, to the alien shapes of Acne Studios, ready-to-wear luxury brands have heard that the millennial consumer desires not fancy dress loafers, but impractical running shoes that will fit into the streets of the contemporary metropolis. But is there no middle-road for all of us who sees the ennui of formal-wear, but find it hard to reconcile with sportswear when we have spent most of a lifetime trying to escape it? If you squint, your present-day fashion diva could be mistaken for a straight fuccboi, and that’s not cool.
Writing in his autobiography in 1991, shortly before his death from AIDS-related complications, David Wojnarowicz wrote of his life: “My queerness was a wedge that was slowly separating me from a sick society.” This remarkable inversion of sickness and health, between different bodies that are marked as ‘other’ and the society that enforces this markation, is an apt reflection of Wojnarowicz’ similarly groundbreaking contribution to queer culture. The American artist, poet, and photographer shaped two decades of American queer culture with his captivating photographs, paintings, and stories; he formed important alliances and friendships with a community of artists in and around the East Village scene, including Peter Hujar (his one-time lover), Nan Goldin, and Kiki Smith; and was one of the most adamant voices in the fight against AIDS in the late 1980s and early 1990s. Known to many primarily for his iconic album cover for U2’s One, all of Wojnarowicz’ work was a emotional and deeply resonating critique of American identity, politics, and culture. In LOEWE‘s most recent initiative, creative director Jonathan Anderson visits the artist’s archive to release a capsule collection of t-shirts honoring his seminal legacy while supporting the continued fight against the illness.
As we’ve reported before, the 1990s are back, along with one of its most distinct fashion trends: the thin sunglasses. This miniature-size eyewear fad was popularized by a series of powerful women in 90s movies like The Matrix and Clueless, and resonated with Europe’s rave scene as much as it did with North America’s neo-preppy college populations. But as hipster culture of the 00s rolled out, re-fetishizing authenticity and “the alternative”, the thin sunglasses went into a decade-long hiatus, demonized as the most ghastly of all. But now, thanks to fashion’s current 90s revivalism, and euro-fetish brands like Gosha Rubchinskiy and Balenciaga, the sunnies are back, channeling part dystopian youth culture (perfect for the Trump years!) and part high fashion ironique.
The internet almost broke in 2017 when Supreme, the mega-hyped New York streetwear brand, launched a collaboration with luxury fashion house Louis Vuitton. All of the sudden, the characteristic red/white logo, first appropriated by Supreme from the American artist Barbara Kruger and since applied to everything from skateboards to sweatshirts, was available in high-quality merchandise of French luxury fashion, most significantly with the offering of handbags for both men and women. Kim Kardashian flipped out, as did we. The collectormania that has surrounded Supreme since their earliest days was catapulted into extremity (spawning articles like this one). While the mastermind behind this crossing of worlds, LV Head of Menswear Kim Jones, have since gone to greener pastures, Ebay is still on fire with speculative trading a year later, with wallets and bags going for several thousand dollars. It would appear that the world never seems to tire from skate-infused merchandise.