Off-Kilter Glamour. Y/Project AW21

Y/Project‘s Glenn Martens makes his visual brand for the brand so distinct, that sometimes you wish he surprised with a completely new direction. But then, consistence is key to success, especially in times of global crisis. The  pandemic has pushed Martens to unify his men’sand women’s ready-to-wear collections into one. It’s a smart move for many brands. With his new post as Diesel’s creative director, showing less will allow Martens and his team time to refine their craft and push the boat out even further. But back to autumn-winter 2021: majority of the 64 looks on display are threaded with metal wiring which is integrated directly into the fabric, allowing the wearer to scrunch, swirl and bend their garments into whatever shape they desire. It’s a technique Martens introduced a few seasons ago, turning oversized shirts, opera gowns and the brand’s signature denim into ultra-versatile pieces. XXXL polo shirts circle around the models’s bodies; shirts appear frozen in a snapshot, mid-motion, like the wearer is trying to rip it off their torso. The art of distortion is Glenn’s signature – and it’s being knocked off by so, so many designers. My personal highlight of the line-up is the eveningwear, a territory Martens likes to gradually discover each season. Those draped column dresses and flowing skirts are glamorous, but in an off-kilter, Y/Project manner. The collection is tied together with the brand’s on-going collaboration with Canada Goose, which this season includes a couture-like rain cape. Topping off the look is some Cinderella-like glass slippers that are actually made of rubber, courtesy of sustainable Brazilian label Melissa.

“Live” collage by Edward Kanarecki.

Gift Guide for Her – Stay Home Glamour

For the starter: this gorgeous Khaite tulle gown in green!

This year, I’ve to embrace the spirit of coming together this holiday season and decided to create dream gift guides that might make it easier for you to go (and filter) through the festive season. Get ready for a selection of beautiful items that will spark joy and last for years. The ones that will certainly please one’s senses and deliver heavenly feelings. Treat your loved ones and yourself! Here’s the curated edit of the most covetable delights, for her, which are all about stay-at-home glamour!

Festive Red. Is there any other colour that says “It’s Christmas time!” with such confidence as red? As we wrap up 2020, now is the time to celebrate our loved ones and share tokens of gratitude with those who have enriched this tumultous year for us. Red is the colour of love and courage, and noting how difficult this year was, wear this colour and radiate with confidence, boldness and passion!

Simone Rocha asymmetric tulle evening dress, Simone Rocha crystal drop earringsSimone Rocha silk midi skirt, Saint Laurent double-breasted tweed blazer & Prada high-shine headband.

Treasure Chest. Looking for something extra special? Dazzling jewellery coming from hot, young talents will definitely work as a unique, one-of-a-kind gift. Precious!

Sophie Bille Brahe velvet jewellery box in blue, Sophie Bille Brahe velvet jewellery box in red, Mondo Mondo gold oyster earrings, Ashley Williams heart appliqué hair pins & Sunnei rubberized pink and gold earrings.

Cute Things. Sometimes we all want to feel like a child. Go for playful and fun if you feel like someone had an especially stressful time this year!

Erdem silver earrings, Sophie Buhai velvet headband, Molly Goddard ruffled blouse, Molly Goddard knitted flower brooches set, Molly Goddard knitted flower brooches set & Ashley Williams handle bag.

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NET-A-PORTER Limited

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Princess of Wales Checks. Though her legacy extends far beyond fashion, Princess Diana is arguably the greatest fashion icon of the 20th century. Checks have always been affiliated with festive season, but this year, with The Crown‘s phenomenal fourth season focused on early days of Diana Spencer, I feel like we will all love this pattern even more. Remember, that Diana didn’t wear checks in a boring way, though! The bigger, off-kilter and colourful, the better.

Dries Van Noten crepe de chine and satin top, Dries Van Noten wool tote & Chopova Lowena patchwork pleated skirt.

Be Bold. NET-A-PORTER Global Buying Director Elizabeth von der Goltz says Christopher John Rogers is one of the designers to watch and embrace in 2020, and it’s easy to see why. Since launching his eponymous brand only a few seasons ago, the designer’s voluminous silhouettes, sharp tailoring and unabashed use of color have already earned him a CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund Award. Rihanna, Ashley Graham and Michelle Obama are all fans. His clothes are made for wearing and celebrating!

Christopher John Rogers over-sized double-breasted blazer

Quality Time. How about making those holidays the most-pampered time of the year, as you stay at your home-made spa? Relax yourself with the finest skincare, scents and charming bling-blings…

Costa Brazil “Kaya” anti-aging face oil, Panconesi single earring, Mondo Mondo cardinal drop earrings, Diptyque “Feu De Bois” candle, Susanne Kaufmann antioxidant oil, Susanne Kaufmann body butter, Susanne Kaufmann bath oil, Susanne Kaufmann glow mask & Susanne Kaufmann enzyme peel.

Nouvelle Vague. How about a pinch of Parisian chic?

Marc Jacobs shift-style mini dress, Gucci x Liberty floral ballet flat, Saint Laurent gold earrings & Gucci over-sized sunglasses.

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Modern Elegance. Need to set the bar high? Timeless elegance will score instant points with every style maven – whether we’re speaking of Rosie Assoulin‘s multi-functional knitwear or this charming Brock Collection dress. Also, Byredo‘s “Slow Dance” is a can’t-go-wrong gift!

Brock Collection bow-detailed silk-organza dress, Rosie Assoulin “Thousand In One Ways” convertible cable-knit sweater, Sophie Buhai classic earrings, Byredo “Slow Dance” fragrance, Simone Rocha beaded headband & Gucci ankle-strap platform pumps.

Like A Pearl. From top to toe – and waist to wrist – these are the modern-day, royal classics that will keep on giving, every time they are worn.

Simone Rocha beaded tote bag, Marc Jacobs boucle flared coat, Sophie Buhai pearl drop earrings & Simone Rocha pearl-embellished crossover sandals.

 

Miuccia Knows. Pretty much anything coming from Miuccia Prada is an investment pieces that’s always “in”. Prada and Miu Miu got lots to love this festive season for all the fans of quirky, yet feminine essentials!

Miu Miu leopard print skirt, Miu Miu glitter ballerina shoes, Prada oversized shell choker, Miu Miu nappa leather clutch & Prada logo plaque chunky headband.

She Wears Velvet. The 1990s revival means that velvet fashion is back for good. This sumptuous fabric can be elegant and luxurious, but it’s worth giving it a fashionable twist.

Sophie Buhai velvet scrunchie, Collina Strada crushed velvet longline coat, Marine Serre pink gloves,<Paula Canovas Del Vas pumps & Y/Project velvet mini bag.

Refined. Lounging at its most sublime.

Saint Laurent pussy bow sheer blouse, Saint Laurent latex-style pencil skirt, Cire Trudon Christmas scent candle, Saint Laurent pumps & Saint Laurent velvet dress.

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NET-A-PORTER Limited

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Fashion is Fashion! Go for wild non-chalance to shake 2020’s seriousness off. Play fantastic dress-up, even if the festive evening is spent in your living room. Getting dressed makes such a difference, it’s like an attitude-boost!

Saint Laurent polka-dot skirt, Dries Van Noten cropped jacket, Fornasetti Profumi “Don Giovani” scented candleRoxanne Assoulin earrings,Valentino Garavani floral detail shoulder bag & Manolo Blahnik “Camparicaro” pumps.

Prints Meet Prints.

Khaite zebra-jacquard pants, Gucci horsebit handle bag, Prada intarsia V-neck knitted vest, Christian Louboutin leopard print pumps & Stella Jean pop-art print pleated skirt.

Warm Season. ‘Tis the season for warmth, fine fabrics and a dash of something that makes you feel truly cosseted and cozy. We all deserve to treat ourselves with something relaxing and laid-back.

Marni exposed stitch cardigan, Vilhelm Parfumerie “Do Not Disturb” perfumeSimone Rocha floral jacquard long socks & Isabel Marant oversize hooded poncho.

Neo-Disco. With the rise of modern-day disco – think Róisín Murphy, Kylie Minogue, Jessie Ware and Dua Lipa’s 2020 records – that helped as out during the tough lockdown days, how about having an intimate disco party at your home? Turn on Madonna’s “Confessions On A Dancefloor“, and lose yourself to dance!

Paco Rabanne tie-dye t-shirt, Paco Rabanne chainmail earrings, Paco Rabanne mirror-discs midi skirt, Paco Rabanne chainmail bag & Porte & Paire leather sandals.

Colour Pop. Unpredictable colour combinations always lift the mood. Can’t go wrong with an Extreme Cashmere cardigan in bold orange or the already-cult Bottega Veneta intreciatto-weave cluth in refreshing lime.

Extreme Cashmere orange cardigan, Bottega Veneta leather clutch bag, Assouline “St. Tropez Soleil” by Simon Liberati book, Comme des Garcons skirt & Bea Bongiasca pink ring.

Some more festive gift guides are coming soon! Here are some you might have missed – cozy chic for her and “be bold” for him!

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TASCHEN

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All collages by Edward Kanarecki.

Distorted Glamour. Y/Project SS21

Y/Project gets a bit repetitive – which, in a way, makes Glenn Martens‘ mastership of exaggerated distortion so distict and consistent. And offering a product that utterly reflects your brand is every brand’s priority today. “I had to adapt to a new system, and a new way of working,” Martens told Vogue. “I was thinking, What’s the core of the clothing I make? At the end of the day, it’s to make people happy. The biggest thing you can do now is to bring emotion, because people want what they wear to stand for something.” You could say that that has been a constant ethos of his. Martens has always found joy in making fashion, and that attitude shines through in his work. It’s what makes his clothes – complex designs, often layered in their construction and laden with historical references – fundamentally so intriguing. That inventiveness of his comes laced with a generosity of spirit and a healthy dash of much needed humor. Spring-summer 2021 is no exception. Martens has consolidated much of what he has achieved this past seven years at Y/Project. To anyone who’s a fan of his playful denim, or his clever, interactive knits, there are the likes of bedazzled marbled gray or pristine white jeans, both with those saucy deep-V trompe l’oeil waistbands he loves, or sweaters that would be classic were it not for their askew collars which can be altered at their wearer’s will; this time around one of those might be paired with a new trouser shape he has developed which mimics a silk sarong. The latter might not exactly be for the faint of fashion heart, but they’re a gutsy (and cheeky) response to the moment we’re in, part of what he describes as the collection’s “less serious, less drama” new mood. There are pant suits that can be transformed by being unbuttoned or unlayered. Polo dresses which, via the miracle of their drawstrings, can go from Zoom office to going out – or whatever will constitute that in the months to come; maybe you’ll just vamp it up at home. Meanwhile, a faux-leather trench delivers a serious hit of glam, something echoed by the collection’s flamboyant mules or lace booties. Still, it’s an off-kilter kind of glam, one that’s hardly obvious or expected. Sex & The City wardrobe in 2020, eventually facing the end of the world.

Collage by Edward Kanarecki.

New Reality. Y/Project Resort 2021 + Men’s SS21

Business really isn’t as usual in the times of COVID-19 (and even in the “post” moment that’s now in Europe). Traditionally, end of June and beginning of July is the the moment for all the resort and men’s collections, and in general this time of the year is a sort of “summer September” of fashion. But not entirely in 2020. Showroom visits for the press and buyers are done via Zoom only. Majority of collections feel very safe and are based on the brand’s signatures. Still, some of the line-ups impress, and moreover, appear to be some of the best work coming from the designer in a while. Glenn MartensY/Project is a great example of how crisis and chaos can bring new ideas and trigger a kind of brand evolution. Martens’ innovatively constructed, apparently woozily skewed garments whose conventional templates are drawn from across the demographic landscape of womenswear and menswear, are brain-bending at first glimpse, and often only make sense upon second look. “Obviously, these looks are distorted, and that is part of the fun of the brand. But most of them you can wear calmed down. Have you seen the video?”, he told Vogue. This season, instead of holding a menswear fashion show, Martens worked to create a video show-and-tell for Y/Project newbies that he said was partially inspired from the opening scene of Dangerous Liaisons, in which Glenn Close is laboriously installed into her pannier dress. Here Martens and two colleagues show how looks from these jointly digitally presented collections can be worn; take a fitted, ruched-body womenswear jacket, pull a drawstring, and – ta-da! – you have a full-length dress. Or reach into the innards of a louchely cut suit and – voilà! – you have a double-layered look with a new denim foundation. Martens concluded: “It’s a kind of lava lamp of looks… showing how you can personalize your clothes and how you can make it look as crazy as you want or you can tone it down as much as you want.” The collections here are around a third the size of a normal-times Y/Project offering, and Martens said that the restrictions of lockdown meant that many of the pieces were hewn from deadstock. The collection includes past designs that have been redesigned and upgraded to be even more twisty the second time around. This is a virtue, as is that distorted adaptability that is at the core of Martens’s work – for what could be more sustainable than a single garment that you can wear in a multitude of ways? Also, as the press was informed, Martens discussed Evergreen, which is the title of a new all-sustainable collection of core Y/Project pieces that will start with a launch of 16 pieces online in September, and then be added to going forward. “It’s a selection of garments, which I believe can go into your wardrobe forever. And we also decided to only make them in the most basic materials which are not at all oriented to a season, so it’s really black, white, and denim.” These garments are not “basics” – the initial lineup includes Y/Project’s much-socialed, super-skimpy, jean/panty “janty” hybrid – and bear all the usual twisty codes of Martens’s design-eye, including rotating-collar shirts and hoiked-shoulder blazers. Looking forward to see it!

Collages by Edward Kanarecki.