Two of the most interesting people I met in Stockholm, rapper Yung Lean (who dropped his new single on Vogue.com yesterday) and dyed-in-the-wool avant-gardist Ann-Sofie Back, don’t have licenses—which I’m not knocking at all, as I only began to drive a few years ago.
Not driving makes the subject “kind of mysterious and interesting to me,” says Back, whose Fall collection was inspired by cars and how you sit in them. This explains the extra room in the knee, for when you’re behind the wheel, and the fact that lots of the decorative elements are only at the front of garments, not on the back where they’d be sat on. After many years in London, Back returned to Sweden and, after some experimentation, decided to focus all her attention on Back, a secondary line that grew into a main line. “I don’t think you take yourself completely seriously if you like my brand,” Back said. “It’s someone who likes to play with fashion and isn’t scared.”
Another familiar name on the schedule was J.Lindeberg. While the company’s bearded founder, who is returning to his namesake company, wasn’t present, pictures and a video he took of Frida Gustavsson in the new Fall collection—the last one designed by Jessy Heuvelink—were prominently displayed. Gustavsson was also in attendance with her new husband. Inspired by tribes, from the Maori to the Inuits, the lineup’s most notable pieces were the jackets, especially the shearlings and a furry brown and tan number.
London-based Greta Gram, who trained at H&M and with Viktor & Rolf, presented a somewhat plain sophomore collection on models walking at a snail’s pace. The string chokers they wore were pretty, as was a Miró-inspired dress with inset pops of color.
Technology, rather than art, generated a lot of buzz at Ida Klamborn’s presentation, which boasted a “democratic front row.” Local celebrities gave up their seats to make room for a “robot installation” that used virtual-reality cameras to live-stream the show. Real-time feedback could be communicated through an app called Front Row, which the robot lights registered by changing brightness. An interesting concept, it had little impact on my experience. Of note was the designer’s casting, which was diverse in terms of ethnicity, age, and shape. Klamborn, who is dressing Seinabo Sey on tour, created some interesting hybrids, using piping on a pair of cords, which gave them an athletic vibe, and combining yoga pants and classic schoolgirl corduroy.
Students at Stockholm’s Beckmans College of Design, who had been tasked with designing their own interpretations of local brands with whom they had worked, got their moment in the spotlight. I was most impressed with the deconstructed looks presented by Victor Lind, who was paired with House of Dagmar. Lind said he was referencing “melancholia and seasonal affective disorder,” but his clothes sure brightened my day.
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