In April, AZ Factory, the independent brand founded by the late Alber Elbaz, debuted the first iteration of its guest designers (or “amigos”) concept to celebrate the designer’s legacy. South-African designer Thebe Magugu was named the first amigo, revealing a collection rooted in his heritage and Elbaz’s signature silhouettes. Now for its second round, the designer couple behind the brand Ester Manas (Ester Manas and Balthazar Delepierre) debuted their line for AZ Factory.
Size inclusivity in the fashion world was a big focus for Elbaz when launching AZ Factory in 2021. His first collection for the brand, titled “My Body,” showcased a range of knit dresses that were flattering for all body types, running in size from XXS to 4XL.
So naturally, Ester Manas’ sustainable and size-inclusive designs were a perfect fit. The Brussels-based brand merges its sexy cutout and skin-baring designs with codes signature to Elbaz’s designs, including bold colors.
The duo paid homage to Elbaz’s first collection by parading bodycon knit dresses and sculpted shoulders down the runway that follow a “one size fits all” mantra, per an interview with Vogue.
There was also food featured on the mesh print inspired by a neo Dutch still life that was also a nod to the late designer. “Food could be the best meeting point between Alber and us,” Delepierre told the outlet. Manas added:, “It was the starting point. The connection of the body—big body, or not—with food in fashion is sometimes really tricky. Alber, but us too, we would really like to play with this idea.” And “to say, it’s ok,” she said.
Continuing Elbaz’s body-positive vision and consciousness, the capsule collection will be stocked in sizes XS to 3XL, allowing people of all sizes to feel great in pieces no matter if their body changes. The AZ Factory by Ester Manas will be available in November 2022.