God is a woman, and she’s wearing Mugler. Casey Cadwallader‘s vision for the brand is empowering, inclusive and boldly feminine. That’s again demonstrated in his spring-summer 2021 collection, which wasn’t presented during Paris Fashion Week, but as an off-the-schedule sci-fi video starring Bella Hadid and friends of the label. Cadwallader pointed out the increasing importance of music videos in the absence of live performances. He’s working on clothes for those apparently, too – just think Miley Cyrus, Cardi B and Caroline Polachek! In fact, about half of his time is spent on VIP requests. The other 50% he expends on the label’s ready-to-wear, but he’s not exactly playing it safe with this category either. “I felt it was time to deal with the fantasy side of Mugler,” he said, referring to the house founder’s infamous collections of the 1990s. There’s the hyper-sexy clothes, and then there’s the way he’s going about making them. Cadwallader is putting a lot of effort into sourcing more sustainable materials. He says those bodystockings will be constructed with 100% recycled lycra by autumn 2021. And he’s also working at lowering the prices of pieces like the twisting-seam jeans he designed for his first Mugler collection two years ago and the Lycra and illusion tulle leggings and tops that he likens to “complex puzzles” of couture pattern-making. “There’s energy in young people that want to buy Mugler,” he said. That jibes with the trend toward body-conscious – and body-positive! – collections we saw this season at brands like Fendi and Eckhaus Latta. Also, what’s new – Mugler is moving to a see-now-buy-now model starting in February. This capsule collection is a “prelude” of that outing. Many brands failed with this business-mode, but who knows, a brand like Mugler might really pull it off.
Collage by Edward Kanarecki.