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A respectable new entry for this season, Phaedo Studios, a brand of Chinese origin, whose name is inspired by a Plato work, Phaedo (in ancient Greek Φαίδων, Phàidō).

Fascinated by the sound and the protagonists of the famous Platonic dialogue, the young designer Zhuzhu, baptizes his own experience characterizing it immediately with a cultured and sophisticated aura, confirmed by the extraordinary care with which he presents his collections. Graduated from SiChuan Fine Arts Institution and then trained at the London Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design, Zhuzhu continued his studies at the Royal Academy of Fine Arts in Antwerp, Belgium and in 2014 in Hangzhou, China, founded Phaedo Studios. A path of cultural internalization that is enriched and intensified by the relationships with representatives of the world of art, design and fashion, areas that the young designer does not separate, developing them instead as coordinates of his own artistic dimension. In 2017 he is in fact a guest of the Triennale di Milano where he encounters the artist and collector Axel Vervoordt with whom he will develop an assiduously collaborations cultivated by that wabi-sabi spirit that unites the two personalities.

In the very accurate stands of the Parisian showroom the silk, with a suggestive abundance of tones and shapes, is the protagonist and around this precious fiber a story takes shape, a story that concentrates on what is observed and that goes far beyond here and now. The astonishment, in the face of the enthralling nuances expressed by the hanging garments, starts a soft narrative that reveals the long and complex experiments in painting the fabrics.

The process is natural, hand-made in tanks containing: fruit, seaweed, earth, coffee. The color density is given by exposure to the sun which usually lasts 2 months. The more the garments are exposed to the sun the greater is the intensity of the color, therefore they are tinged, then left to dry and then tinged again and left in the sun, until the desired note is reached.

For this reason each garment is unique and can vary with use, changing shades when in contact with the skin and the air.

The fabrics are confusing, the cotton looks like silk, the silk seems leather, the burned paper gives a chromatic continuum that, like on a musical score, harmonizes the whole collection, highly crafted and strongly characterized by sartorial knowledge of ancient Chinese tradition.

Phaedo’s poetics finds breath in the silhouettes, an alternation of empty and full, of weights and lengths that expands and amplifies a femininity which is solemn and ethereal, resolute and diaphanous, in a stunning and poignant flow, between East and West, furrowing unexplored territories that, probably, are still emerging thanks to cultural influences and completely new and globalized visual syntheses.

 

As always, an opportunity to appreciate the discovery is to accompany you into his show-room in Paris…

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Always present in the history of the Maison, the Issey Miyake Resort, once called Fête, is presented much in advance compared to the concerning season. Included in fact in the pre-collections calendar, the line breaks that canonical waiting period between the end of one season and the beginning of another, animating the store life with suggestive promises about the time to come.

Projected on the imminent Spring/Summer Collection, the new arrivals are carrying the creative inspirations of the artistic director Yoshiyuki Miyamae, specifically fascinated by the work of the American artist Georgia O’Keeffe during her stay in New Mexico.

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Georgia O’Keeffe, From the Lake No.1, 1924, Oil on canvas, Nathan Emory Coffin

Collection of the Des Moines Arts Center

The prints, laid out on the complex diagonal folds of the tulip shaped dresses, on the circular tops or on the vertical wavy ones of the dubbed shirts, are real pictorial samples, evocations of the abstract landscape paintings of the American painter. In the elaboration offered by the Maison, the color follows with extreme complicity the soft and harmonious textile texture of the non-deformable polyester, which was spun in vaguely floral shapes or in solid color lines with the visual simplicity of a freshly rippled sea. The constant textile experiments, hallmark of the Japanese company, are also expressed in the particular cotton denim, where the processing, typical of jeans, is transformed into continuous solid color canvas, without intermediary stitching.

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Even for a smaller collection like Resort, Issey Miyake challenges the inattentive look, invites it to linger, to follow the waves obtained from the steam processes of the exclusive textile technologies, to translate the lightness of shapes and colors into amazement and wonder for garments with an innate vocation to be incomparable companions of travel!

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As always, an opportunity to appreciate the discovery is to accompany you into his show-room in Paris…

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Find online the Issey Miyake Resort Collection

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Already a regular guest at London’s Dover Street Market, despite her young age, Renli Su unveils an unprecedented China compared to what usually comes in mind: a common place of low-cost productions or certain throwaway Chinese clothing.

Daughter of a globalization that shortens space-time distances, the designer of Fujian, is formed at the Central Academy of Fine Arts in Beijing and continues her studies at London College of Fashion in London. Passionate about history and linked to the placid and maritime landscapes of her country of origin, in an unique and very personal cultural syncretism, Renli Su weaves her collections keeping stretch the strings between local solicitations and the discoveries related with the history of costume, discoveries carried out during the studies in Great Britain.

It’s the Victorian England that fascinates the designer in particular, as the shapes and fabrics can reveal the social life of the nineteenth and early twentieth century. The fabrics revived in the fairs and vintage markets of the European metropolis, allow her to cultivate, with the typical academic look of those who are ardent for textiles – less accessible in China after the Cultural Revolution – a cure for visual details, appropriating them in the realization of her garments.

Each collection follows and elaborates a historical theme, for the Fall/Winter 2018-2019 the inspiration is drawn from the extraordinary story of the French botanist Jeanne Baret, born in 1740 and considered the first woman to circumnavigate the world. Jeanne’s insatiable curiosity and desire for adventure led her on an almost impossible journey: disguised as a man she embarked on the ship of the Prince Louis Antoine de Bouganville, remaining many years at sea and visiting the most remote places. During her travels she discovered, collected and cataloged hundreds of species of plants, among which the most famous is the bougainvillea, named in honor of the chief explorer of the expedition.

One wonders what is the connection between the French researcher and the work of the Chinese designer and it is Renli Su herself who explains it to us:

“While Jeanne Baret represented two different ways of observing the natural world, combining the feminist folk knowledge of herbalism with the botanical science until then dominated by men, I seek a balance between feminine and masculine silhouettes, fusing elements of the Victorian era and floral motifs with the sailor’s uniform for a more contemporary and active vision of the woman”

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And here is the translation, in a tenderhearted textile story:

Naval traditions are evoked by the creamy white furrowed with blue and beige stripes, sometimes with “lacquered” effect treatments that emphasize the shimmering of the sun and the salt; intense blue and faded grays suggest the depths of the oceans. Embroidered flowering branches, as if they had naturally fallen on the quilted and slightly embossed cotton, replicate the meticulous drawings of the adventurous botany. And again, cotton and linen jacquards rise like sailor sleeves. The silk and wool textures are offered thinking to protect those exposed to the weather of the trip. The Victorian details are seen in the ‘diboning of the corset’, with crossed strings and textile patchwork that together bring elements of Chinese culture, from cotton paper, to familiar work uniforms that can be traced in diagonal cuts and closures. The quilted cotton and the use of synthetic fur with very warm yak fibers, for jackets and reversible coats, insist on respecting the seasonal thermal requirements.

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Renli Su makes no secret of her inspirations and aspirations which, as herself writes, emerge from an instinct, deeply human, of adventure and the courage to follow it, regardless of one’s origin and culture, in spaces, geographical or mental, still unknown and often antithetical.

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As always, an opportunity to appreciate the discovery is to accompany you into his show-room in Paris…

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Find online the New Collection

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Sometimes we have noticed how, in the collections by Rei Kawakubo in art Comme des Garçons, we can find the textile expression of philosophical concepts or perceptions on the contemporary deepened in the form of a dress.

The theatrical shows that characterize the presentations of the last seasons, accompany the spectators inside intense suggestions, emphasized by lights, music and scenes designed to enhance the cryptic proposal of the Japanese intellectual.

For the Fall/Winter 2018-2019 the inspiration comes from a work by Susan Sontag, Notes on Camp, in which the American author reflects around a sensitivity, defined precisely Camp and that we could summarize in the following passage:

 

«It is not a natural mode of sensibility, if there be any such. Indeed the essence of camp is its love of the unnatural: of artifice and exaggeration. […] A sensibility is almost, but not quite, ineffable. Any sensibility which can be crammed into the mold of a system, or handled with the rough tools of proof, is no longer a sensibility at all. It has hardened into an idea.»

Source: Wikipedia

The theme, collected by Rei Kawakubo, is dressed up in hyper and oversized multicolor structures created exclusively for the fashion show, in the fellinian sound of Nino Rota, in the dim light reserved for the funny, excessive and dreamlike figures on the catwalk.

The following translation into the showroom reveals items of much more reasonable portability, although densely inhabited by that original poetic aura. The presence of velvet, of frequent floral rouche, of contrasting color stratifications composed on torn fabrics bring the collection to a Venetian atmospheres, evoking a luxurious and evolved 18th century, dedicated to an intense social life, enriched with occasions and cultural events. The designer‘s soul wraps so in textile acrobatics the curious, aesthetically vulnerable, silhouettes of female minds still available to welcome astonishment and imaginative value in the everyday routine, making it much more special!

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As always, an opportunity to appreciate the discovery is to accompany you into his show-room in Paris…

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Find online the New Collection:

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A made in Italy sustained by promising names is hidden behind the young Miaoran brand.

Miao, the Italian-Chinese designer of the brand, after an education in design and pattern making at the most prestigious European schools, began an intense collaboration with Missoni.In 2015 he founded his own studio in Milan and in 2017, impressed by the talented trait of the boy, Giorgio Armani supports the Spring/Summer fashion show in the prestigious Armani Theater in the Tortona area.

Even if it still maintains a certain eclectic style, Miaoran already shows constants that identify the way it operates: a recurring presence of oversized volumes, which offer the possibility of being worn without distinction of gender and age; a deep knowledge of the fibers which are balance in a reasonable way in the ongoing season; a playful approach to the composition of the collections, traceable in the use of a personal graphic and illustrative ability, clearly visible in the last Spring/Summer, more subtle in the chromatic compositions of the Autumn/Winter 2018-2019. Even the inclusion of unique pieces and the search for suggestive fabrics can be considered characteristic elements of the young and curious designer.

Attentive to the suggestions and narratives of the experiences in the store, Miao reveals himself every time a skilled and promising interpreter of the contaminations between East and West that increasingly meander in the reserved environments of fashion.

 

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As always, an opportunity to appreciate the discovery is to accompany you into his show-room in Paris…

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Find the Fall/Winter Collection of Miaoran

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