Men’s – In Search For Excitement. Acne Studios SS20

There are moments when I really think that some brands would do better with look-books instead of fashion shows. Especially Acne Studios‘ menswear. Jonny Johansson‘s spring-summer 2020 collection had lots of Acne classics – like elongated white shirts, cropped pants, so-ugly-it’s-good sneakers – that need no further introduction. For the sake of the show, they were made bit weirder with plastic lapels and cowboy fringes. The most interesting garments were the woven ones in scarlet red (with raw fringing) – they were the most attractive and sparked at least some excitement. But in overall – this show brought very little to the table and drowned in the sea of other menswear shows in Paris that got barely anything to say.

Collage by Edward Kanarecki.

On Power Dressing. Acne Studios AW19

For autumn-winter 2019, Acne Studios’ designer, Jonny Johansson, considered what’s high fashion from the perspective of young people, and how it might change throughout time. “All the power dressing that I consider iconic womenswear, maybe they are attracted to it, but in a different way.” While doing the research, he also thoroughly examined Helmut Newton’s eternally chic photographs, and was amazed with the fact that those visuals are so relevant, and not getting old – even a day. All this gave birth to a collection, that’s quite different to Acne Studios we’ve seen in the last few seasons. Oversize pants were cinched at the waist and tucked into socks; coats had those refined-looking, rounded shoulders; draping, probably never seen at Acne before, looked sublime. The new season silhouette is sharp and chic, but there were also elements that felt distinct to the brand’s aesthetic: knits with raw finishings, eclectic jewellery (those XXL bracelets are gorgeous) and, other than the very seductive, Newton-ish pumps, heavy trekking boots. Worn with one of the statuesque blazers or a collared ‘office’ midi-dress, the elegant-slash-off-duty look would exactly be what Johansson worked on this time: power dressing, fitted for a contemporary woman.

Collage by Edward Kanarecki.

Men’s – Rustic on Acid. Acne Studios AW19

Acne Studios’ designer, Jonny Johansson, isn’t the guy you will see all over the Paris fashion week Instagram feed. He’s an outsider. Or even, a double-outsider, as he dubbed himself in a Vogue interview. “Because we’re from Stockholm, which is from way outside [the fashion world], plus I’m from the very north of Sweden, which is way outside even Stockholm.” Being ‘outside’, to a surprise of many, has major advantages in fashion industry – you’re different, and you offer something different. Acne Studios always feels slightly off-beat, raw, but not nothing close to the stereotypical image of cold, Scandinavian minimalism. For the men’s autumn-winter 2019 collection, Johansson delivered clothes full of soul and energy. The designer mused on mid-century bohemia and counterculture in the fringed poncho-sweatshirts and acid-palette coats and jackets worn unbuttoned, over naked torsos. Snake-effect leather and cow-print pieces were very Americana, even rustic. Wear that extra long, ecru scarf when it’s cold. Use it as a blanket when the sun comes out. Don’t be afraid to step into mad in these colourful, trekking boots. Jonny loves the idea of a city escape, whether it’s the forest or the mountains. He works with this ‘weekend traveller’ notion for a while, and seems to enter the season with a similar spirit.

Collage by Edward Kanarecki.