Using traditional American materials, from brown houndstooth wool to red nylon, No Sesso‘s designers Pia Davis and Autumn Randolph wrote their own lexicon of fashion classics steeped in their experiences as Black women. Dresses dripped off the body, some in filmy olive chiffon, others in crisp cotton shirting, cradling the bust and revealing slivers of torso, thigh, and breasts. A one-shoulder silhouette with cargo pockets appeared in several different fabrications, hammering home the piece’s versatility. The real stars of the lineup were the upcycled pieces and the pair’s new Levi’s collaboration. The former, made using vintage varsity jackets, ties, puffer jackets, and other unloved fashion items, took the brand’s familiar practice and pushed it to new heights. A dress collaged together from pieces of old knitwear was trimmed in crystal beading, almost ethereal in its execution, while a short zip-front dress was boldly sexy. The denim pieces made with Levi’s toed the line of appropriateness, using corsets, lacing, and zippers to transform a cool, oversize jacket into a sexy little dress. That play of sexual and sensual with something more appropriate is the territory where No Sesso thrives. It’s also the place where Davis and Randolph are able to combine their skills as artists and as pragmatists. This No Sesso collection included more utilitarian, essential pieces than ever before without losing the pair’s deconstructivist touch.
Collage by Edward Kanarecki.