The look is trashy

Updated: 2013-10-20 08:02

By Eric Wilson (The New York Times)

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Derelicte is really happening.

Twelve years after the Ben Stiller-as-supermodel classic comedy "Zoolander" introduced the concept of a garbage-inspired fashion collection, real-life designers appear to be reprising trash as a trend. For anyone who needs a reminder, Mugatu, the bad-guy designer in the film, says: "Let me show you Derelicte. It is a fashion, a way of life inspired by the very homeless, the vagrants, the crack whores that make this wonderful city so unique."

Well, the real thing has arrived. On the spring runway at Lanvin, there were shiny purses that looked very much like trash bags. At J. W. Anderson and Giambattista Valli, there were tunics and dresses that looked as if they were made from cardboard boxes. And at his New York show, Marc Jacobs created a set strewn with detritus, calling to mind a post-apocalyptic wasteland.

During the fall season, garbage bags were used to great fashion effect by Mr. Anderson and Gareth Pugh, and Vivienne Westwood and John Galliano were doing the trash thing years ago.

Mr. Anderson, at his Paris showroom, acknowledged that, why yes, the intricate pleating on leather tunics in his collection did look like corrugated cardboard. There were also some garbage-bag handbags and a clutch that was meant to look like a cardboard takeout container. But actually, the stiff pleating effects came from another designer, Issey Miyake. "I have huge respect for him," Mr. Anderson said. "This was about finding a new way of pleating." He called his collection "avant-garde bland."

Alber Elbaz, the Lanvin designer, has made no secret of his distaste for fashion's obsession with 'it' bags, so his luxury trash bags were widely viewed as a pointed statement. (So far, he has only cryptically remarked to the feminist blog Jezebel, "I don't make garbage bags.") But no one was more literal than Mr. Valli, who included a cardboard dress (actually printed silk) that came with a rope belt (really bronze). The look, he said, was inspired by the films of Pier Paolo Pasolini, which took a certain delight in tormenting the bourgeoisie.

The New York Times

The look is trashy

(China Daily 10/20/2013 page10)