PRETTY/TOUGH: ASTRID ANDERSEN

Astrid Andersen is a watershed phenomenon in urban menswear. Within five years of graduating from the Royal College of Art the blond Dane slam-dunked her signature pretty-tough aesthetic across the runways and editorials. She gave luxury retailers and buyers what they’ve been scouting for: a fresh upgrade on street style jerseys, hoodies and sweats. Fall-winter 2015 collection asserts Andersen’s creative dominance. She may go down in fashion history as the designer who made pink lace “gangster”.

 

 

Fusing American influence staples like hip-hop and basketball with Japanese samurai and yakuza references creates a particularly strong look as alluring as it is ominous. It doesn’t matter if it appears in out of focus black and white or in shades of coral and burgundy. Part of Andersen’s visceral appeal has always been nonchalant gender-bending. The pink lace on military berets is by no means a subtle transgression given its context. Yet it works. The overall statement is decidedly unequivocally masculine.

From pants to hats, oversize seizes the day. As a nod to Andersen’s growing global audience and perhaps as a concession to its own functionality-centric reputation, Nike has licensed its iconic footwear for the runway presentation. This trendsetting association bodes well for Nike’s style cred and should boost sales for Andersen as well. Brand’s stocklists in Tokyo, Hong Kong, Seoul and Los Angeles must be working in overdrive.

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