It is magical to see two worlds collide. As we near 90 years have passed since Elsa Schiaparelli’s famous fashion-meets art extravaganza in 1935, collaborations continue to exist in new ways.
2021 was a year of collaborations that never stopped. Collaborations were more extensive than ever before. The Hacker Project was the first collaboration to involve two luxury behemoths, Balenciaga & Gucci. Next came ‘Fendace, which used the same methodology that the Hacker Project. It seemed that the slew inter-brand projects was endless, never-ending, and extremely engaging.
It seemed that the momentum from the last year had accelerated into 2022. These are our top picks from this year’s collaborations.
Gucci x adidas
Prada’s collaboration was polished and elegant, but Gucci’s collaboration was constant in reimagining and recontextualizing adidas’s motifs. Trefoil appeared on tailored suits made from everything, including corduroy and silk jacquards. adidas stripes can be seen on capses, dresses, and swimming caps. This is Alessandro Michele’s ability to adapt symbols and give them new meanings.
It was not Supreme’s first collaboration, nor Burberry’s with a luxury brand. Supreme collaborated in 2017 with Louis Vuitton, and it was the talk of the town. Burberry collaborated in 2018 with Gosha Rubchinskiy. This was a tribute to the popularity and appeal of the nova check amongst Russian youths during the post-Soviet period. Supreme brought the heritage to Burberry for the collaboration. Supreme brought out the heritage in Burberry to help it recover its past with the nova check, and the ‘chavs’ who wore it. This gave an opportunity for a new perspective on the signature print, which was instantly recognisable as a cool factor in streetwear.
Balmain x Barbie
This legendary collaboration proved that Barbie men can still be Barbie men in a Barbie world. Balmain collaborated with Barbie to create 50 unisex clothes for men who love dressing up. Balmain’s logo was reimagined in the collection. It took inspiration from the Barbie logo from the ’90s.
Loewe x Spirited away
It was our dream to live in Studio Ghibli movies with Loewe’s Spirited Away collection. Jonathan Anderson, the creative director, created iconic characters like Kaonashi, Haku and other Loewe products. He used graphic elements to evoke the whimsical elements of the movie.
Balenciaga Engineers The Yeezy Gap
It is always fascinating to see a fusion of high fashion and fast fashion. Demna Gvasalia’s form-focused approach and Yeezy’s militaristic design ethos complemented each other perfectly, creating utilitarian everyday designs that were distinctive in their bellowing structure. It was an artistic collaboration that successfully combined so many worlds (namely Demna’s Balenciaga world, the mass-market Gap and Yeezy’s musical roots), and sold out immediately due to the star power of the trio as well as the collection’s affordable price point.
Moncler + DingYun Zhang
Dingyun Zhang, a Yeezy-approved designer, has always been fascinated by the idea of protection. He fuses organic forms with that idea to create extraordinary designs. Moncler Genius’s prolific collection reflects the same. It refers to Jason deCaires Taylor’s underwater sculpture, ice fishing, emergency inflatables, and airbags. Each piece of this collection, which was made within the coral colour palette, was a statement and glimpse into Zhang’s imagination.
SYRO for Charles Jeffrey Loverboy, AW22
Charles Jeffrey is collaborating with SYRO, a queer footwear brand, to challenge gender norms for the autumn/winter 2022. The collaboration is inspired by punk, club culture and the New Romantics. It features all-over studs and spikes as well as giant belts that are adorned over heels in flamboyant 1980s fashion.