June 6, 2013

Who's Got Talent?

With the 2013 CFDA Awards taking place last Monday, we thought it'd be the perfect time to post about some of our favorite designers. From those who have consistently reinvented themselves, to up and coming talent, these are the taste and trend makers ruling the runway.

photo via Dazed Digital

The two and a half year old Chicago label, Creatures Of The Wind, have been on everyone's radar the past few seasons. With a prior CFDA nomination and a J.Crew collaboration under their belt, duo Shane Gabier and Christopher Peters are making a name for themselves while still remaining modest to their brand. From shipping to stitching, the designers have expanded their business and manufacturing practices, but continue to do a lot on their own with a DIY approach. They are known for their indie design aesthetic, unique sensibility and Rodarte-esq use of mixed media fabrications. Not to mention, the pair works with three factories based here in New York, produce in Japan, and have even started to make knitwear connections in Hong Kong.

video via YSL

Despite a name change and a super controversial collection, Heidi Slimane is grabbing people's attention and bringing in the money in the process. The former sexy and sophisticated YSL line has now transformed into the modern, grungy Saint Laurent that's flying off store shelves. He's even got the face of model of the moment, Cara Delevingne at the forefront of his Fall 2013 campaign. What's next for the brand as it continues to evolve from its house roots? Well, Slimane has also launched a photographic series called the Saint Laurent Music Project, which is dedicated to portraying rock legends who have been dressed by YSL from its earlier days until now. So far the brand has worked with the likes of Marilyn Manson, Courtney Love, Bowie, Jagger and most recently, Daft Punk, among many others.

photo via Orta Anadolu

Pronounced "Them," THVM Atelier stands for This Here Very Moment. The premium denim label is based in a century old LA factory, home to a collective array of artists, each working side by side on various disciplines. Recently they partnered with William Lemon III to debut a collection of brightly colored avant-garde prints on their tops and jeans which is available at the LA shop Weltenbuerger. For Fall/Winter 2014, they will be collaborating with the Turkish mill, Orta, to produce three stories: Old Loom inspired by the history of workwear, Winter Blues focusing on indigo color blocking, and FitsWell which uses performance stretch to highlight flexibility and high recovery. The progressive denim label even has a magazine, THVM Rag, highlighting the creative process that reflects the inspirations and methodologies of each seasonal collection.

photo via Surface To Air

Surface to Air, where retail gets creative, literally. The name combines both a clothing line based online as well as with four shops located in New York, Paris and São Paulo, with a Studio for cool projects and films. The company also serves as an ad agency with clients that include Lanvin's Avant Garde scent, Uniqlo, Louis Vuitton Haute Joaillerie and Dom Perignon. For this French luxe brand, an average day can include everything and anything from designing their collections to shooting a music video. However, when it comes to the fashion, we love the effortlessly cool wearability of their streetwear looks. They have even collaborated with Alison Mosshart, the frontwoman of The Kills and The Dead Weather to produce the ultimate leather jacket which is available now.

photo via Ann Sofie Madsen

With an impressive background that includes training at John Galliano for Dior as well as positions at both Peclers and Alexander McQueen, Ann Sofie Madsen first launched her couture-inspired collection in London in 2010. Since then, she has expanded her resume to include work as an illustrator for graphic novels and youth books, with 8 published since 2011. Her fascination with contrasts, like primitive versus civilized, has led her to commonly reveal "the well-known through the unknown" in many of her abstract designs. She constantly experiments with materials and incorporates traditional handcrafted techniques with cutting-edge ones. While her Denmark roots may not be reflective in much of her work, she has still be deemed, "one of Denmark's biggest design talents."

What makes this fresh group of creatives stand out is their eagerness to experiment and challenge fashion's norms. They make their presence known because in today's industry it's about more than just great design. Without a point of view and the ability to take risks, a designer's talent is only as good as it looks. 

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