Raf Simons unveils first womenswear collection
As his namesake fashion brand celebrates its 25th anniversary, Raf Simons is making his womenswear debut. The results of this first incursion into women's fashion were unveiled on 23 October as part of the digital presentation of the label's menswear collection for Spring-Summer 2021 – an event for which the Belgian designer created a roughly 20-minute video entitled "Teenage Dream", a somber and mysterious film peppered with references to cult films.
Accompanied by a downbeat experimental soundtrack, the video depicts the journey of a group of young men and women who crawl through a hole in a wall, into a strange, unsettling garden with an oddly spongy floor. Here they move around as though in slow motion, often on all fours, creating a darkly new-age atmosphere.
The men and women in the film share the same wardrobe, wearing pieces that complete one another or overlap. The clean, pared-down cutting typical of Simons can be seen in voluminous jackets, coats, dresses and poncho-like nylon tunics, as well as in tight-fitting minimalistic outfits with a futuristic edge. Plastic, which appears intermittently on gilets and jackets, accentuates this effect.
The designer plays with colours – pink, green, turquoise, purple and red – mixing pieces in different hues, such as tight turtlenecks, opaque tights, satin dresses and neck warmers, to make a series of ever more original silhouettes. Elsewhere, he introduces psychedelic 70s-style prints, which put one in mind of Emilio Pucci.
And, of course, there's no shortage of the slogans so dear to designers at the moment, which appear on insignias, badges and patches, where one can read "Welcome the Children of the Revolution Home," "Disorder" and other mottos. The effect is that of a kind of fashion manifesto, with elements that echo certain pieces made by Simons with Miuccia Prada this season, as part of his first collection with the Italian house.
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