For several years now, each September, Vienna’s MuseumsQuartier becomes a fashion hub that brings together about 70 designers. Various Austrian and international designers/brands show their collections on catwalk shows and in the adjacent sales area of Quartier21, which invites visitors to go shopping.
Looking at Romanian designers that recently showed their Spring/Summer 16 collections at Vienna Fashion Week, I’ve picked my favorite pieces from three of them: Irina Schrotter, Smaranda Almasan and Andrea Tincu.
Irina Schrotter SS 16
Irina Schrotter’s brand was launched in Iasi, Romania. Flowing evening gowns and smart business clothes were an instant hit among women in search for an alternative everyday wear. Since 2012 Irina Schrotter’s main line has been created in collaboration with designer Lucian Broscatean. Irina Schrotter´s S/S 16 collection is characterized by geometric cuts, new proportions, conceptual details and different textile structures. Sophistication meets a cool and edgy attitude.
Irina Schrotter SS 16 collection is built on minimal & smart tailoring, featuring Lucian Broscatean’s signature asymmetric design pieces where lightweight fabrics are beautifully wrapped around the body. The result is a sophisticated, relaxed & sexy look completed with subtle accessories and luxurious details.
Head designer: Lucian Broscatean / Assistant designers: Carmen Chereches & Diana Flore/ Shoes: Mihaela Glavan
Smaranda Almasan SS 16
Smaranda Almasan is a Romanian high-fashion design label. The collections are characterized by elegant designs, fine cuts and sharp silhouettes. The style is avant-garde to be worn every day, giving individuals a better opportunity to dress experimentally. Established in 2009, the studio is based in Cluj/Romania at the Paintbrush Factory, a collective space for contemporary arts.
Pursuing a creative direction that started a few seasons ago, Smaranda Almasan continues her fashion adventure imbued with vivid colours and spirit of playfulness. Her Spring/Summer 16 collection explores unusual combinations such as embroidered fabrics mixed with camouflage and applique details, finished with sporty elements. A particular artistic and experimental fashion approach that is worth to be watched / Shoes by Mihaela Glavan.
Andrea Tincu SS 16
Andrea Tincu is a brand created for those who know high class fashion. From design to the final product, from special materials to flawlessly final touches including silk, Andrea Tincu is a fulfilled promise to the customer. Each collection has a different theme, being a totally fresh creation, preserving the designer’s personal style and emphasizing Andrea Tincu’s promise to provide novelty.The collections were presented on international catwalks such as Kiev, Vienna, Athens, Amsterdam, Sarajevo, Zagreb and London.
Titling her SS 16 collection The Magical Maze, Andrea Tincu carefully composes the outfits starting with black & white and shifting then to delicious summery hues. While keeping the white shirt as a central fashion item, Andrea Tincu explores the dialog of transparent and opaque elements, graphic effects strategically placed on the garments, hand made prints – everything based on quality natural fabrics / Shoes powered by Papucei
TeamLab, formed in 2001, is a collaborative, interdisciplinary creative group that brings together professionals from various fields of practice in the digital society: artists, programmers, engineers, CG animators, mathematicians, architects, web and print graphic designers and editors. Referring to themselves as “Ultra-technologists,” their aim is to achieve a balance between art, science, technology and creativity
Their recent project titled Floating Flower Garden – Flowers and I are of the same root, the Garden and I are one, was on show at Maison et Objet Paris – a major event for professionals working in the art of living in all its rich and varied expressions. Previously exhibited at Tokyo’s Miraikan National Museum of Emerging Science and Innovation, TeamLab’s flower installation is an interactive project providing the visitors with a particular experience.
Floating Flower Garden is designed so that viewers can walk through a suspended garden while sensors detecting the presence of the viewer cause the flowers to rise upwards all at once, creating a hemispherical space with the viewer at its center.
Inspired by Japanese Zen gardens, the interactive floating flower garden is conceived as a place where viewers are immersed in flowers, becoming one with the garden itself. I found this creative/conceptual approach both contemporary and sublime.
Floating Flower Garden – Flowers and I are of the same root, the Garden and I are one – TeamLab‘s art installation
BEN COTTRELL AND MATTHEW DAINTY, COLLECTIVELY KNOW AS COTTWEILER, ARE CONCEPT LED DESIGNERS WHO RESPOND INSTINCTIVELY TO THEIR SOCIAL ENVIRONMENT. FORWARD THINKING DESIGN AND MANUFACTURING IS COMBINED WITH AN ASPIRATIONAL QUALITY TO FORM A RELEVANT, MENSWEAR LABEL.
IN ADDITION TO PRODUCING SEASONAL COLLECTIONS STOCKED WORLDWIDE, COTTWEILER PRODUCE FILMS AND INSTALLATIONS, WHICH HAVE BEEN SHOWCASED AT THE INSTITUTE OF CONTEMPORARY ARTS, LONDON, HAUS DER KUNST, MUNICH AND ALISON JACQUES GALLERY, LONDON.
Primarily, Cottweiler caught my attention through their innovative approach to athletic gear. Since sportswear became a major orientation in fashionable streetwear of the moment, there is a constant need to redefine it. Design duo Matt Dainty and Ben Cottrell definitely know how to do that. Throughout seasons, with every new Cottweiler collection, their style becomes more and more refined, achieving a luxurious touch.
I appreciate their taste for art installations instead the traditional catwalk shows, their interest for technical vs. natural fabrics, their carefully constructed details and stunning fashion silhouettes. Cotweiler’s Fall 15 menswear collection, shown at Alison Jacques Gallery, London, mixing the sport casual vibe with stylish and weird display (see pictures), deserves a special consideration. A smart combination of sport elements, workwear style, sophisticated details and hi-tech fabrics, I guess this is what should be labeled as “modern sportswear”. While workwear inspiration always proved to be a successful formula (from jeans and Doc Martens to aprons and overalls), Cottweiler leads it to another level – look at those white boots, amazing!
images via showstudio.com
The cover shoot for i-D mag Spring 2015 (‘The Activist Issue‘) featuring various brands like Martine Rose, Rick Owens, Vetements, Nike, Supreme or Marc by Marc Jacobs, puts together loose jackets, hoodies, oversized jogging pants, sporty tops and sneakers in order to achieve a sophisticated silhouette evolving beyond activewear in some kind of urban-contemporary-charming-Vetement(s)esque style.
i-D Magazine, Spring 2015 fashion editorial
Photo: Willy Vanderperre / Fashion Director: Alastair McKimm / Hair: Duffy / Make-up: Lynsey Alexander / Nail technician: Charlene Coguard / Model: Natalie Westling (The Society) / images via i-d.vice.com
By launching their new online platform BoF Education, businessoffashion.com also unveiled the BoF Global Fashion School Rankings of the top 21 undergraduate and 10 graduate fashion programmes around the world. The rankings (updated for 2015) are based on rigorous analysis:
“The ranking is based on a rigorous methodology incorporating 60 different data points gathered directly from a shortlist of 24 top fashion institutions, surveys completed by 4,032 students and recent alumni, feedback from 88 HR professionals and global fashion influencers and our own BoF analysis of 21 undergraduate and 10 graduate programmes around the world.”
Each programme was evaluated on three key dimensions: Global Influence, Learning Experience and Long-term Value. While the last decade saw a growing popularity of fashion design studies and the rise of many famous fashion schools striving for supremacy in the field, BoF articles & research concerning different aspects of fashion education related to the streams in the industry become truly relevant.
Duckie Brown new menswear collection recently displayed at NYFW, proved once again that American design duo Steven Cox and Daniel Silver are really daring. I mean, to built an entire menswear collection around the idea of oversized pants folded around the waist in order to fit a normal guy silhouette, to introduce luxurious silks and match them with those colored Eastland shoes – that’s truly adventurous. And uber cool. What about the sheer tops and the infamous electric yellow suit?
Aesthetically, the pieces are gorgeous and the silhouettes have a very particular charm. But after all, are the male customers prepared for such a surprise? It seems that Steven Cox and Daniel Silver decided to assume the risk. In my opinion that’s what any creative designer should do from time to time. I love these pants anyway!
Lately, the possible connections that could be traced between fashion and art became the subject of quite interesting discussions. Whether fashion could be linked to the world of arts or whether art could play a fashion role – these questions remain opened for further explorations. On the other hand, we have to admit that we are dealing with two different things that don’t need to be forced to work together. At least not literally, like we saw in Viktor & Rolf demonstration for their last couture show.
In my opinion, the topic deserves a lighter treatment. That is why I picked James Merry’s work for example. His cute embroideries on vintage sweaters and his very personal way to adorn all those iconic sportswear logos with flowers, moss or mushrooms, seems to be a more adequate formula – smart, sincere, clean, honest… and wearable after all! The concept definitely deserves to be developed further while it could be extended at various levels.
James Merry, a very particular artist who spends his life between New York and Iceland, is already known as the creator of exquisite embroidered masks for Bjork’s stage shows or videos. James Merry is also a former collaborator of Damien Hirst and the author of an illustration book. His recent sportswear logo project (see the pictures) shows that he still has plenty to say, whether it would be in the field of art, fashion or something in between.