Some fashion shows, you get the feeling that the poor models are having the worst time of their lives—and worse, that looking that way was an artistic direction from the designer. Not so at Ashish, my favorite designer ever, who today showed his signature sequin-candy creations at London Fashion Week with some vibrant, joyful looking models who alternately skated down the runway in sneakers or vamped in heels.
The whole deal was about playfulness, even when he made plain statements about non-gender-specific clothing—where some designers make unisex casting a Part of Their Statement, Ashish’s models were just part of the landscape, you know, like how all genders just exist in the world. In his best recent seasons, the London-based Delhi designer has made statements on work (Fall 2013), globalization (the BEST Spring 2014), and double standard (Fall 2015). Here, he’s going off cuff and celebrating a basic, baseline lack of conformity, inspired, apparently, by a haphazard, mixed up pile of sequins left lying around one day by accident. (Such things happen when you are the Sequin King.) Slip dresses with pretty clumps of glitter slapped on them and worn with equally bedazzled Puma sneakers, tulle ruffle robes, and straight up CAPES made out of denim capture the essence of what makes streetwear the number-one most important jam with young people, which is that celebrating your own individuality to the point of not giving a fuck is the coolest one can possibly be. The rest is just icing (or glitter!) on the cake.
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