In light of the pandemic, Belgian designer Dries Van Noten is creating clothing that sparks joy. Of course for any fashion enthusiast, a new collection from one of the world’s leading designers is bound to do that anyway. This week however, the lauded creative released a collaborative capsule with luxury e-tailer, Net-A-Porter and Mr Porter.
“The capsule collections for both Net-A-Porter and Mr Porter have been conceived to stimulate the imagination and dreams of moments of joy, relaxation and wellbeing in our lives,” Van Noten exclusively tells GRAZIA. “They were designed in full lockdown, so even though we were extremely restricted when designing, we knew we wanted and needed to convey a lot of passion and emotion within few garments.”
The womenswear offering is comprised of 62 pieces in an assortment of bright and bold patterns in lightweight poplins, jerseys, terry, and mesh knits alongside accessories and shoes. For men – the first time Van Noten has collaborated on an exclusive menswear collection with a retail partner – the line features 40 pieces.
“The collections are special to me as they offer optimism and clothes to wear in our future lives beyond this chaos when we can enjoy the world and travel again,” the designer continues. “This dream is quickly becoming a reality which is exciting. They are designed for good times in mind, and I hope they bring joy.”
Whether you’re hunkering down for a cool winter in Australia or defrosting from the spring sunshine in the U.S., androgynous styles and relaxed silhouettes allows for a seamless wardrobe transition. This not Van Noten’s first foray into psychedelic prints and sunny bursts of color, but a sense of nostalgia is peppered throughout the pieces.
“The inspiration distills and heightens people’s vision of summer,” Van Noten says. “I asked my team ‘what do we yearn for of our Summer?’ and it was clear that surf, palm trees, and tropical beaches were top of mind. We then set out creating scrapbooks of summer dreams. We playfully explored clichés and postcard slogans like ‘Wish You Were Here’ – this seems so symbolic and appropriate now.”
Knitted bralettes and kimono style outerwear is paired with bucket hats and chunky sandals. For Van Noten however, the task to choose just one key piece is all too hard.
“It is impossible for me to single out one key piece that is emblematic of these collections or I will resonate more than the others. We designed all elements with the intention that they would meet the moment and emotion we sought to convey in their own way.
“For these collections, we designed to have easy, relaxed, and comfortable pieces. A carefree summery state of mind, one we all need these days and that looks soon become a reality.”