Lindsay Degen is one of New York’s most creative and interesting designers, using her namesake label Degen as an outlet for her vibrantly colored and sometimes wacky knits. In the past, she’s created rainbow fantasies and cartoony interpretations of body consciousness; in her Fall 2015 collection, she applied these multicolored dreams to interestingly shaped knitted sculptures, and has garnered a cult following of the young and fun. (In addition to the wondrousness of her garments, I still can’t stop thinking about these shoes she designed.)


This New York Fashion Week, which also coincided with the beginning of New York Textile month, Degen decided to make something a little bit different. Rather than having a traditional presentation or runway show as she had in the past, she gathered several of her artist friends—Kate Phillips, Amy Cakes, Heather Marie Scholl, Eliza Fisher, Katelynn Hanners, Kayla Carpitella and Lexy Ho-Tai—to collaborate on a recycled-fabric sculpture entitled “Construct.” The accompanying garments were crafted in all white for the first time since she started producing Ready-to-Wear, a choice she made to keep the focus on the craft of the textiles, which included wavy cable knits and loose paper paillettes sewn to a t-shirt. To emphasize the importance of the people who labor to create clothes—as opposed to those who simply wear them, as she describes in our conversation above—she positioned the models around the sculpture as if in a life form drawing class, and they sat silent contemplating its presence. (The one-of-a-kind pieces went on sale that evening, and are presently all sold out.)

Jezebel met with Degen during her New York Fashion Week presentation at Wanted Design on the South Street Seaport to discuss her work and this collection. She was wearing her own designs and greeting a procession of young fans, all full of energy. “Wearing white is highly impractical,” she said, “but it’s about process, and maybe part of the process is spilling on yourself.”

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