Since the birth of social media, designers have been looking to online communications as one of their most important tools in their arsenal for reaching a desired audience and clientele in real time. Unlike traditional runway and print formats, social media allows fans of the designer and brand to see collections, personal photos, and designer inspirations as they move through their day to day lives, creating the feeling of a more personal experience for the viewer. However, sometimes brands can, unfortunately, fall into the bad habit of using their social media accounts as a static means of showcasing their products and nothing else, taking away from the intimacy and personal connection that apps like Instagram can offer their fans. Luckily, we’ve found 5 designers whose Instagrams go way beyond the realm of merely showcasing their collection and give a glimpse into their lives for all of their fans and followers to admire and partake in. Here are the 5 designer Instagram accounts you need to be following!
If there’s one thing designer Simon Porte Jacquemus does best, is finding beauty in the everyday. With his signature triple posts, this French designer has found the perfect formula for keeping his Instagram account looking sharp, interesting, and personal. Rather than just showcasing images of his collections or celebrities who’ve worn his creations. Jacquemus instead posts triple images all relating to the same thing to achieve one of the most visually appealing Instagram accounts out there. These triptychs range anywhere from posts thanking magazines for using his work in their editorials, branded content, thanking celebrities for wearing his creations, editorial work, collection previews, and best of all, personal images from the designer’s everyday life. Which perfectly showcase the joie de vivre that the south of France (his home and muse) is so well known for.
Oh, honey! The shade, the shade of it all! Not many designers working in the world’s great fashion capitals are brave enough to call it like it is out of fear of creating negative press. But not Christopher Shannon. The menswear designer’s Instagram account is on one hand, beautiful to look at, chock full of bright images that showcase his creations. But on the other hand, Shannon’s Instagram account has an indiscreet sprinkling of posts where he posts little comments on the fashion industry. Most are up for interpretation because they tastefully comment on current situations without naming names, while some others speak directly about some of the shady and underhanded moments in fashion that we’re all thinking about, yet too scared to talk about. This makes Christopher Shannon’s Instagram the perfect little sip of industry tea that we’ve all been waiting for.
Loaded to the brim with personal influences and inspiration, fashion’s beloved Brit designer, Jonathan Anderson has managed to put together one of the most genuine and pretty to look at social media accounts on the internet to date. Boasting a plethora of soft black and white nude images, vintage photography, art, and work from his J.W Anderson and Loewe collections, Jonathan creates a sensual atmosphere that pulses with raw sexuality, art, and brand content that really is a pleasure to behold. Unfortunately, Mr Anderson rarely posts pictures of himself, but that’s all the more reason to follow his stunning account. You never know when a surprise selfie might pop and sweep you clean off of your feet.
Gareth Pugh is one of those designers that the fashion industry has sadly typecast. Since his designs are all relatively avant-garde and futuristic and push the limit on what the rest of the fashion industry considers fashion, Pugh has been labelled a “gothic” designer, which is all well and good. But here’s the interesting part. What Pugh presents on the runway is only a facet of who he is as a designer and as a person. A quick look at his Instagram page shows that the dark and serious side of him that’s seen on the London runway is merely one part of who he is as a person. Countless posts about everyday happy moments, life in London, and political protests paint a multifaceted picture of the brilliant designer. Recently, Pugh sent a collection down the runway during London Fashion week which accurately portrayed the current US government as a hellish fascist regime, creating conversation over whether or not designers should take the chance and protest current political climates around the world. But Pugh made it clear, his collection wasn’t merely a stunt to grab attention during fashion week. His feelings toward the US government extended to his personal life and countless of his posts on his Instagram are there to show it.
Twin sisters Mary-Kate & Ashley Olson have had lives completely dominated by the media since their early childhoods and we would imagine that they’ve done everything they humanly can to break free from the image their childhood work has cast on them. Fast forward a decade later and the Olson sisters are now the driving force behind one of New York’s most innovative and well-respected fashion powerhouses. The Row represents artistic simplicity and raw power, all tied neatly into one beautifully designed package. And it’s safe to say that they’re Instagram page is one of the most beautifully curated profiles on the internet. With not a selfie in sight, the Olsons perfectly translate their quiet and put together private lives as designers into the digital world. With a mix of their work sprinkled about countless pieces of artwork and day to day inspiration, The Row’s Instagram page looks as if it could be printed out and hung in the MoMA itself.
One interesting thing that most people don’t know about is that many of the world’s most beloved brands and fashion houses actually make the majority of their profits through accessories. Brands like Prada and Dior are tasked with creating new and exciting bags, shoes, jewellery, and more to drive sales through the roof.
Some brands are even blessed with the gift of having almost their entire yearly revenue derived from the sales of their non-clothing goods. That just goes to show how important accessories really are to the fashion industry itself. They aren’t just afterthoughts or cherries on top to add “a little something” to the collection. They’re there to seal the deal on whether one loves a collection or skips it. Here are Novella’s top picks for best accessories of fall/winter 2017.
Prada: As she does every year, Miuccia Prada released a coveted selection of bags that are sure to end up on everyone’s must have list. Ranging from all black and all baby blue shoulders bags, green ostrich feather handbags, nylon satchels, and python skin to fur-covered confections and printed leather bags, Prada outdid itself once again in creating an innovative and versatile collection of handbags for every occasion. However, one bag stood out from the pack. A bag that clearly played off the brand’s fall 2017 collection of book bags. Like its predecessors, this new bag resembles a leather bound book, but this time the entire bag is comprised of velvet, giving the bag a quirky 70’s feel.
Miu Miu: Just like her bags at Prada, Miuccia’s Miu Miu bag collection is another beautiful example of how well-rounded a designer she really is. This season, Prada’s younger sister released a groovy collection of bags that mirrored the collection’s feminine 60’s flare. There were bags with fur handles and bags with large glamorous brooches. But the most interesting pick of the collection was a selection of bags that had “Miu Miu” stitched all over the bag in a stunning psychedelic swinging 60’s font.
Jacquemus: Simon Porte Jacquemus has been one of the only designers of late to actually produce worthwhile collections. And although the statement may seem a little extreme, it’s completely called for in Simon’s case. For his fall 2017 collection, Jacquemus gave the fashion world one of the most creative and innovative bags to date. Gone are the days of his “haricot” bags and wallets — his newest offering comes in the shape of an upside down envelope, mirroring the bags a bourgeois woman of the 1950’s would have worn in Paris. The greatest thing about this bag is that it carries (no pun intended) all of the things that define French clothing (like the gold chain and old world shape) and literally turns it on its head, thereby making the bag distinctly Jacquemus yet still very much French in design.
Chloe: Chloe has always been a staple in exceptional bag making and this season just another testimony to that statement. This season’s it girl bag has to be Chloe’s white sand coloured circle crossbody bag. The adorable bag is the perfect run around bag that matches any outfit, plus the brass coloured metal handle adds that perfect bohemian touch that Chloe has always been known for. And the best part is that the bag looks as if it will be available in a multitude of neutral and dark colours to suit any preference and need!
Altuzzara: The last bag on the list is by far the most traditional of the bunch, but that isn’t to say the bag is in anyway doughty or matronly. This Altuzzara handbag came in a stunning array of complementary colours that suited every look in the collection perfectly, which is also a plus. But the best part about this season’s Altuzzara bag had to be its simple design and decoration. There were no gimmicks here. Just a beautifully designed leather bag with an accompanying flower that would make even the most elite of New York’s Upper East Side squeal with delight.
Gucci: Leave to Alessandro Michele create a cowboy inspired 80’s ankle boot that actually looks amazing. During his latest Gucci show, Michele sent out a real throwback of a shoe that was completely off colour to what has been going on at Gucci. The bright white bootie comes complete with an almost Wild West/almost Eastern European embroidered floral design that fits the brand’s outstanding new vision perfectly. On top of that, the boot itself is perfect for the 80’s revival trend that has been sweeping the fashion world this season.
Tory Burch: Tory Burch is a brand that has more recently been associated with wealthy soccer mom chic, rather than high fashion fallal. But this season, the American brand looked as if it was trying to shed its current plateau and engage new customers. And the shoe of the show did just that. This beautifully ornate Tory Burch heel burst onto the catwalk with one thing in mind — to make a statement. And that it did. The stunning heel pulled out all the stops to command attention; the sculptural heel, European style brocade pattern, and a beautiful oversized bow harked back to imperial French court glamour. It’s safe to say that Tory Burch is finally making fashion and that’s a wonderful thing.
Maison Margiela: The incomparable John Galliano has made a new name for himself at Margiela since his arrival at the iconic Belgian house. Every season it seems that Mr. Galliano has fresh and innovative ideas for his clientele’s eyes to feast on. For this season’s Margiela show, Galliano presented a knee length boot in an ever-so-relevant 70’s inspired silhouette. The boot, which features an ultra feminine pencil thin heel and deep ochre coloured python print, resemble the same heeled boots that independent and fashionable women wore back in the 1970’s, making it an instant buy on any trend followers must have list.
Rochas: Rochas has always been spot on when it comes to gloriously elegant women’s clothing. This season at Rochas, viewers were treated to the most darling of pumps one could ever imagine. The shoe, which looked to have taken inspiration from 1950’s fetish heels and Marie Antoinette court shoes, are as prim and proper as any shoe can get. And that beautifully placed heel makes the entire shoe look even more delicate and glamorous.
Thom Browne: Thom Browne has never been one to shy away from designing things that many would consider outlandish, but that’s exactly why he’s on this season’s “best of” list. For his winter wonderland inspired show, Browne created a heel that features his trademark all-American brogues crossed with an interesting hollow wedge heel made to look like a figure skater’s blade. The shoe is a testament to how amazing a designer Browne is. Not only is the shoe perfectly designed to fit, it also carries one of Thom Browne most easily recognizable trademarks. On the front of the shoe, a small shirt and tie can be seen peeking out from right under the ankle, showing any potential customers that Thom Browne’s quirky suiting is never too far away.
Christian Dior: Berets have been the go-to headpiece of the season and the hardworking ateliers at Christian Dior were definitely paying attention. For fall 2017, Dior had berets coming down the runway in full force. Part French go-to, part pro-feminist statement. The berets conjured up images of strong warrior women ready to fight for female freedom and independence.
Loewe: Jonathan Anderson has been wowing audiences in London and Paris for quite some time now, so it comes as no surprise that the British wunderkind presented another spot on collection for Loewe this season. The collection itself is a mishmash of all of the most beautiful things that Anderson has designed in the past, with the tiniest hint of European village life. This is where the hat comes in. The darling straw hat isn’t overbearing and ostentatious like many straw sunhats that have been shown on the runway. This adds to Anderson’s rendition’s charm. Rather than making the hat comical and theatrical, the small brim size gives the sunhat an air of authenticity and realness.
Coach: Coach is another one of those brands that ran into an extremely commercial plateau for quite a while. However, recently the brand has beefed up their designs and created relevant and exciting collections to lure would-be buyers in. For fall 2017, Coach has managed to design a wonderfully trendy hat for the young streetwear wise dressers of the world. With its fluffy shearling outer layer, the hat seems like the perfect alternative to a beanie for those chilly New York nights.
Adam Selman: Now this may not be the most traditional hat, but that doesn’t take away from how interesting a topper it is. At Adam Selman’s show during NYFW17, audiences were treated to a quirky little birdcage fascinator that was equal parts adorable and badass. Like 1950’s motorcycle gang chicks, the models stormed out with powerful little flowers on their heads and the best part about them is their versatility. Not only could you wear them with jeans and a leather jacket, but you could easily pair the fascinator with a beautiful black cocktail dress for more formal events.
Marc Jacobs: Marc Jacobs has always been fashion’s little rebel. Taking everyday trends from past and present and turning them into high fashion concepts. For his fall collection, the inspiration was clear. 70’s and 80’s urban and hip hop culture reigned supreme on the runway and it was perfectly evident in Jacobs accessories. This puffy hat is a perfect alternative to your traditional winter beanie. Instead of having a regular old boring knitted winter hat, you can have this interesting oversized retro beanie instead.
Anna Sui: Anna Sui is one of those designers who has and will always march to the beat of her own drum. Since the early 90’s, Anna has been creating collections that are distinctly her own. This season’s Anna Sui sunnies follow in her great tradition of doing her own thing. The blue sunglasses feature a theatrical angular cat eye that is only further enhanced by their bright cobalt shade. The glasses also perfectly compliment the collections 1920’s/1970’s bohemian chic aesthetic, giving the wearer the glamour of a traditional cat eye with a bright pop of a mod colour.
Acne: The beauty of Acne is in its simplicity. While other brands thrive off of creating elaborate shows and collections, Acne has blossomed into a fashion powerhouse by infusing Swedish minimalism with high fashion appeal. And this is perfectly evident with this season’s sunglasses. The shades for fall/winter 2017 were simple in their construction. Two thin silver arms hold the angular coloured lenses in place to create a psychedelic feel to the glasses. Think John Lennon à la 2017 high fashion mod. But the quirky simplicity of these sunglasses aren’t the only selling points here. The glasses are actually quite versatile. They can be paired perfectly with a casual pair of jeans and a band t-shirt or glammed up with a silk neck-tied blouse, wide leg pant, and a floppy summer hat.
Anya Hindmarch: Anya Hindmarch’s entry into the industry as an accessories designer must be what pushes her to create an interesting range of accessories that are completely relevant, on-brand, and desirable outside of her own already spectacular clothing lines. Her fall 2017 sunglass collection just goes to show that she understands what her customers want. She could have easily made a pair of sunglasses with a simple frame and lens for her collection, but instead she chose to create a fur trimmed pair of sunglasses that more closely resembled a pair of skiing goggles. The fun, fur trimmed sunglasses add that perfect wintery feeling to an accessory that’s usually associated with warmer weathers and the summer months, giving the overall look a high fashion après ski feeling.
Fendi: Fendi is an accessory giant. Like its other Italian contemporaries, Fendi owes much of its success to its sales in trendy and in demand accessories. Usually known for its outlandish designs, Fendi presented a surprising take on sunglasses by creating a clean and perfectly polished pair of circular sunglasses. The posh specs fit spectacularly with the cool and composed vibe of the collection. It just goes to show that sometimes simplicity really is key!
Sacai: Sacai is a brand that has garnered a huge following over the years. And it’s easy to see why. This season’s sunglasses are in fact the most visually stunning, adorned with a number of butterflies framing the arms and lenses. These Sacai delights are perfect for commanding total attention when walking into a room. The one possible downfall of these sunnies may be their theatricality, but that’s also their the biggest allure. The beautifully decorative butterfly wings add an old world whimsy to the glasses that has slowly been coming back into fashion. And why not enjoy these shades all year-round? They would make the perfect winter pop of summery colour and the perfect summer conversation piece.
If you didn’t find time to make it to New York Fashion Week this year, have no fear. We have compiled a list of a few noteworthy designers and their contributions to this year’s runway. If you are looking for style inspiration, you have come to the right place. Let us guide you by displaying some of our favourite menswear looks that are fresh off the runway.
We couldn’t mention our favourite Fall/Winter 2017 collections without first discussing Raf Simons. Perhaps the most anticipated show of the season, Raf Simon’s debut at New York Fashion Week was incredible. Championing the title of Chief Creative Officer at Calvin Klein in August, Raf has certainly been busy. The collection devotes itself to New York City, with bold titles of “NY” carefully placed on knit sweaters. A highlight from the collection is noted in the accessorizing of the models. Oversize beaded necklaces hung off each model and displayed messages such as “I LOVE YOU” and “WALK WITH ME.” This collection presented a youthful exuberance inspired by those native to New York City, while making it accessible to all.
John Elliot’s Fall/Winter 2017 menswear collection presented itself as a sportswear brand that doubles as a streetwear brand. This season, the runway was recreated to look like a basketball court and engaged the cultural exchange taking place within the world of sports. John Elliot incorporated satin and silk materials onto metallic bomber jackets and reinvented the classic leather jacket by adding an array of colours. While not only including incredible texture into this line, John Elliot integrated hues of blue, green, and silver together, creating a colour palette that won’t go unnoticed.
Ovadia & Sons
Ovadia & Sons brought military inspired wear to this year’s runway with camo prints and army greens. The collection, created by twin brothers Shimon and Ariel Ovadia, features a personal history inspired by their father — a professional soccer player who was conscripted into the army. The collection recounts his time spent in the Israeli army and creates a visual canvas of his past as a soccer player. Much of the line fits into the athlesiure wear trend that is very popular in today’s menswear. As both designers were born in Jerusalem, they took inspiration from their roots while presenting their personal history onto their clothing, by adding Hebrew lettering to soccer jerseys. Ovadia & Sons let us into their world by sharing their intimate details, and allowing individuals everywhere to partake in their history.
Orley has masterfully integrated neutral tones onto knit workwear. The collection trademarks a preppy aesthetic, while at the same time drawing inspiration from singer-songwriter Nick Drake. The collection creates a nostalgic kinship for the seventies, and features corduroy as one of its main textures. Orley offers a collection that is polished and perfectly tailored to the individual. Since the brand’s debut in 2012, Orley has achieved a great deal of success. This season, Orley continues to make a name for itself while offering a clean collection that is carefully crafted. The line exudes vintage tones through its’ presentation of wool sweaters and cashmere suits.
Uri Minkoff crafted a collection inspired for the metropolitan man and his daily commute. The line includes tailored clothing that is carefully designed for men on-the-g0. For example, Uri Minkoff included buttons on the ankles of pants to ensure that chain grease from bicycles doesn’t soil the garment. The runway was recreated after a New York City crosswalk and appeals to bike messengers and businessmen everywhere. Uri Minkoff includes weatherproof jackets with fashion forward designs. Accessories were also a stand-out of this collection, through cross-body bags, to smaller-type luggage. The collection is timeless as it is effortlessly trendy, while practical.
Monegros, Gobi, Kalahari — if you were good at geography in school or you simply are familiar with deserts, you probably recognize these names. But here we are talking about shirts. Paloma Canut and Ana Marroquín, the duo behind the emerging Spanish brand SUNAD, took their shared love of deserts and nature a step further to create a concept that is rocketing them to success. Here are 5 things you should know about SUNAD:
The idea of a shirts-only brand, all named after deserts, came to their minds when they were having a hard time finding the perfect classic shirt. From that nostalgia, the duo behind SUNAD got down to business and developed a whole new concept that filled that market gap: timeless shirts made in Spain with only natural fabrics.
The designs of these ethically-made shirts evoke the desert, the dunes, the sun; their enigmatic color combinations and the quality of the materials produce a timeless and lasting shirt made with great detail.
Paloma and Ana have plans to expand their brand in the future — probably a men’s collection —, providing that every piece they make is related in some way to shirtmaking — the essence of SUNAD.
SUNAD is like an oasis in this fast-paced fashion industry. It advocates a concept that’s become revolutionary today: slow fashion. “[It] was born out of nostalgia of those pieces of clothing that were worn back in the days. Good quality clothes that lasted years and years as the very first day; that were well crafted and never became outdated,” Paloma and Ana explain.
They were looking for those timeless pieces and never found anything that exactly followed that philosophy, so they set up their own brand. It was a brave move because embarking on this type of journey in Spain, where the financial crisis can still be felt, takes a lot of courage. But it paid off.
Before successfully venturing into the fashion industry, Paloma Canut was a concept and graphic designer and Ana Marroquín was working in the interior design business. “Although these two disciplines are very different, [we] have many things in common,” they say. In fact, their shared love of deserts and nature, as well as their work ethic, are at the core of their business.
When they launched SUNAD in August 2015, they decided to quit their jobs so they can focus full-time on getting their brand off the ground. Today, they continue working together hand in hand and both love “taking part in all the process.”
MADE IN SPAIN
SUNAD makes its shirts entirely in Madrid, Spain, where the entire process — from the creative idea to the actual product — takes place. It is a small brand that is growing fast. And although Ana and Paloma are happy and proud of being able to produce their shirts in Madrid, they are aware of the difficult task of introducing the concept of “slow fashion,” especially in Spain.
“Our product works better outside our frontiers. It is a pity that the ‘Made in Spain‘ concept is more valued outside our own country than here,” they say. However, they feel optimistic about the future and strive toward being a game changer. “We want this to change. We want people from all over the world to be aware of the slow fashion movement and value the quality and durability of the clothes as a justification for the price.” The shirts cost from 110€ to 140€.
As deserts are the starting point for their business and an endless source of inspiration for their shirts, the name, SUNAD, has also something to do with them. Ana and Paloma wanted their love for nature and deserts to be represented in some way in the name of the brand. They came up with the idea of making an anagram of dunas, dunes in Spanish, to create a new and unique brand — hence, the enigmatic and lyrical, SUNAD.
Spanish fashion is undergoing a great transformation thanks to a new generation of fashion designers who are reshaping the industry with their new, fresh ideas and their use of social media platforms.
One such designer is Alba García, the talent behind Coelh, a jewelry brand that merges tradition and new technologies — the past and the — under one name.
I met Alba at one of the coolest rooftop terraces in Madrid, Hotel de las Letras. There was not a cloud in the sky and the bright sun made her jewelry pieces even more beautiful, if that’s possible.
She laid on the wooden table different silver rings with little stones in colors that range from light blue to black, as well as necklaces and earrings. “Everything is handmade,” Alba said; from the creative process to the production, Coelhdoes it in-house. Though it takes up most her free time, Alba enjoys the process because jewlery has always been her passion.
As a child, Alba made her very first pieces out of beads and she would later sell them to family and friends. “It’s always been a hobby,” she told me, “but I’ve always had this business mind.” And it was this mentality and her contagious positive attitude that led her to join a jewelry course two years ago in order to learn the ins and outs of the industry.
In April 2016, she finally decided to set up her very own brand, Coelh. She manages to juggle the full-time job with her university studies in Business and Marketing. “The beginnings are always difficult but you are learning the ropes of the industry step by step.”
Alba works in a little but well-equipped workshop in the center of Madrid. Coelh requires a huge amount of dedication and personal sacrifice because she makes everything by herself with a little help from family and friends from time to time. “I need a week to make one of my jewels,” she explained. But the wait is totally worth it — every piece exudes sophistication. “Jewels say a lot about us,” Alba said — from the way we wear them, to the design we choose, and the quality of the pieces. That’s why, for her, materials are as important as beautiful designs are. “I aim tow ork with the best materials,” she explains, which is something that her clients love.
Despite its small scale, Coelh is growing fast and is already becoming a profitable business. Alba has tapped into the fascinating world of fashion bloggers and influencers with great success and today, she counts on a crew of collaborators and followers who showcase her pieces on their blogs and social media platforms. This is where the Coelh’s traditional concept of jewelry meets modern marketing platforms and gives us a glimpse into the future of the industry.