Urban streetwear and business suiting collided on the Kris Van Assche catwalk on Friday. The designer tried his hand at cracking the menswear nut of finding a way forward that seamlessly blends together the cool of active wear with the sophistication of tailoring.
“It is fundamentally an urban collection because I like suits, active wear and active characters. This time, I wanted the sporting element that I frequently return to, to be almost military in feel,” explained the designer in his press notes on the collection.
The models certainly walked at a fast military clip down the catwalk. Their speed disrupting the fallen leaf-strewn runway, whipping about the foliage as they sped by in slim trousers, shiny nylon parkas and some winning KVA logo tops.
The leitmotifs of the show were some amorphic forms that Van Assche used to break up the uniformity of his traditional designs. They were inserted into the fabric of his pinstripe suits, became a glossy counterpoint to a matte white button-up shirt or car coat, and were woven into the foundation of pullover knitwear.
The designer talked about being inspired by cycling outfits in his show notes, but other than the fact that the models were wearing sneakers on the catwalk, this concept didn’t really register. Rather, it was a sense of sartorial disruption that permeated this entire collection. As if Van Assche wanted to break apart fashion norms to reconfigure the puzzle pieces in a new way. But for the moment the fully formed image of that new puzzle still isn’t clear.