I’m not an Adidas guy. But I love Lotta Volkova, the Vladivostok-raised stylist, who helped Demna Gvasalia shape Vetements and Balenciaga, has clients like The Marc Jacobs and Vogue Italia, and is one of the most sought after fashion editor of today. “Adidas approached me around two years ago with an idea to work on an undefined project together,” she tells Vogue, noting of her suprisingly mainstream collaborator: “I find it interesting to exercise your ideas in the broader audience spectrum.” In an interview, she continues: “I feel Adidas has always been around. What I mean is it has been such a reference in Eastern European culture, as well as Western subcultures, interpreted in so many ways. And its influence has gone way further outside of sports or even the fashion milieu. For example, I love those kids in Russia who tattoo Adidas stripes on themselves, or shave them out on their heads, or make those stripes into massive stickers, branding their cars.” That subcultural element is present in collaboration pieces that toe the knockoff-real line. Stretch skater dresses appear worn over triple-stripe stay-ups, tracksuits are reimagined as boilersuits, and the brand’s omnipresent slide sandals are pumped up with a wedge heel (super cute). A swimsuit and matching swim cap, both in a wave graphic, are sort of camp, sort of ironic, and totally ideal for the Olympics, if only the event hadn’t been postponed to 2021. These pieces might seem almost like a fashion parody at first, but each is fundamentally grounded in the brand’s extensive archive. And they feel quintessentially Lotta. The stylist names “the earliest pieces of clothing Adidas ever produced” as references for her designs. “For example, the green tracksuit was inspired by the first tracksuit Adidas ever made,” she explains. “Regarding footwear, I was interested to see if Adidas has ever made a heeled shoe, and we discovered the trefoil mules that gave inspiration for the Adilette. Also, I like a very hands-on, DIY approach, which inspired the windbreaker pieces with hardware zips applications.” The important question: How will the stylist of a generation be styling her own collection? “Depending on your style, the items can be mixed with your dailywear or worn head to toe and still maintain a chic, relaxed look inspired by sportswear,” she begins. “For example, I like to wear the zipped jumpsuit with my Chanel flats or any high heels. The super-high-rise swimsuit can be a great top worn with skirts, pants, or any bottoms as well as functioning swimwear.” The pieces are on sale from August 13!
Collage by Edward Kanarecki, look-book photos by Johnny Dufort.