It was Charles who told me about this most exciting news which is the co-lab gathering Rodarte and & Other Stories. I told you that Ximon Lee X H&M was the best collab of 2015. Rodarte X & Other Stories is probably the best of 2016! This is a moment of fashion when a luxury-couture conceptual brand is meeting a sharp and innovative high street brand. It's not the first attempt of & Other Stories to deliver an interesting capsule collection ( think of Vika Gaviskaya, Sadie Williams and Rachel Antonoff), but it's the first time they are working with a high-end brand like Rodarte known for their hand-made creativity, their California vibes and their 70's references that have kept on coming back into their latest collections. The collab is set to arrive next year for Spring. No need to remind you that this capsule collection is highly anticipated and that it is a big challenge for Kate & Laura Mulleavy ( Rodarte is their mother's name): creating objects of desire without lowering the quality and without losing their signature and everything people love about the brand. It's quite impossible to translate their ethos because we are talking about clothes that do cost a thing! The first glimpse of the collection is quite promising (a picture where we can only see legs and shoes). No doubt the Mulleavy sisters know what to do to catch the attention. No doubt that this collection will be a success.
Pics via the Rodarte Facebook taken by Autumn De Wilde
Their Spring Summer 2016 collection is perhaps a key to guess what the capsule collection for & Other Stories will look like. The Mulleavy sisters said that "sometimes they felt like it was futuristic to go into the past". It was a thoughtful move even if making a 70's inspired collection is not an easy thing to do. It is the trend every designer are following nowadays so it's not easy to bring up a new dialogue with fashion, but they are not everyone. What they are doing with this collection I have never seen it before. I can give you a list of designers who are just re-editing stereotypes of this period but I won't because I don't want to waste you time. The Pasadena duet are far from being one of them. Their silhouettes are complex, poetic, feminine and beautiful. It is the result of long hours of hand-craftsmanship. It is a wardrobe filled with opulence and eccentricity where fragility and lightness go hand in hand with the strong party women/girls portrayed in this collection. The kind of girls/women that only go out at night. (Oh yes! I'm imaginative!) A sequin loose suit is opening the collection followed by gowns mixing lace, velvet and embroideries. Some of these gowns feature a fringing detail or have flowers appliqué. The retro vibe can be read all-over these pieces but there is something more, something that has nothing to do with the past. This futuristic approach of the pieces is emerging through the take on fabrics mixing them together to build a new silhouette. There are a lot of showstopper looks especially the closing gowns but I can't take my eyes off the outfit patch-working tweed + skin leather + lace embellishments paired with the glamour art deco pumps.
The Co-lab with & Other Stories will certainly feature less complicated silhouettes but they will definitely be unexpected, beautiful, magical and unique like this Spring Summer 2016 collection.
Pics via Dazed Digital by Evan Schreiber
Words by Yann Sackville-West