Happy Birthday, Alexander Wang. On Saturday night the brand celebrated 10 years in the fashion business. A decade’s worth of streetwise cool kid inspired styles elevated by Wang through his use of premium fabrics, versatile design concepts, and an exceptional talent for branding.
The designer’s nod to his past was played out on a runway long video screen that projected a fast and furious two-minute video that spliced together a sizzle reel highlighting Wang’s most memorable moments over the past decade. Powerful images that blended together a mash up of footage from the catwalks, the campaigns, and the designer’s always exuberant curtain calls.
But that nod to the past wasn’t really where Wang focused his energy this season. He intentionally showed the video after he presented his latest runway collection. It was as if the designer was making the point that yes, he knew he had a decade of fashion under his belt, but that wasn’t going to overshadow his urban vision for the future.
A vision rooted, just as it ever was, in the here and now. Wang’s continued ability to capture the urban zeitgeist is why he is so beloved by so many – a point he proved again as he sent out a collection in front of the likes of Lady Gaga, Kanye West, Nicki Minaj, and The Weeknd that was ready to walk right off the catwalk and into the real world without skipping a beat.
Wang’s audience watched, as they bounced in their seats in time with the vibrations of a serious base beat, a collection unfurl of pieces that they could instantly relate to. Oversized hoodies, silk pajama tops, army jackets, short short jean cut offs, and bomber jackets are all staple pieces in pretty much every urbanite’s wardrobe.
However, Wang gave each item his designer touch and transformed these hallmark pieces into objects of desire. Those XXL hoodies came tricked out with western bolo ties used as the drawstring for the hood. The PJ tops were cut out at the back to mimic the style and shape of basketball jerseys. Army jackets were updated with leather fringing and the short shorts were bonded to a striped boxer short base. As for the bomber jackets, those were treated to a clever honeycomb mesh overlay.
What this collection proved more than anything is that even after a decade in the designer trenches Wang is as cool as he ever was.