NAMACHEKO, the Belgian brand known for subverting designs and themes, has done it again with their latest collection for Fall/Winter 2023. Creative director Dilan Lurr sets his sights on the grunge aesthetic that originated in mid-80s Seattle and has evolved over the years.
Titled “Middle Age Grunge,” the collection takes inspiration from Arthurian knights, incorporating unexpected elements like chainmail-inspired beaded hoods and vests and slimmed outerwear with flair.
Lurr draws from his previous collections, such as embellishment and knits, and combines them with his love of tailoring. The result is a striking synthesis of woolen jackets with toggle buttons, long-line velour vests, and tweed suits with frayed edges. Formfitted gear in gradient colors of grays, greens, purples, and rose is inspired by jousting wear, and intricate knitwear recalls breastplates in gunmetal and twisted sweaters cinched across the chest like armor.
The designer also experiments with textiles, deconstructing single-color yarns and re-blending them to create new colors and textures. He adds intriguing details like rivets and pearl embellishments and incorporates shine with a patent leather car-length coat. Embroidery, knits, and crochet touches add layers of detail, as seen in an ankle cuff of a slim trouser or padding across the knee, while shoulders on knitwear resemble pauldrons.
This collection marks a departure from Lurr’s recent focus on personal and political themes, as he looks to Arthurian legends for inspiration. He also presents footwear for the first time, with braided derbies and a kicky Cuban heel slide made outside of Venice, Italy. The show was coed, with Lurr expressing a desire to move into womenswear without disrupting the menswear. Many pieces in the collection are already gender-neutral, with men in skirts on the runway and women in voluminous coats, staying true to the brand’s ethos of subversion and reinvention.
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