Both designers and musicians face the same problem; the young ones have to come up with new and controversial ideas for each show or album, otherwise no one is bothered. There are countless of mediocre designers and musicians out there on the treadmill. The thing with the older and more experienced designer is that no one expects you to change much. And in the case of Dries van Noten, people would be upset if he did change anything given the strength of the DvN brand!
The Belgian veteran didn’t disappoint when showing his A/W collection at la Bourse; an army of models – quite literally because military and cavalry was an ongoing theme – swarmed the place, all of them carrying their individual handheld stereo. A pot pourri of popular music met the audience, as they smiled at the heavy-duty canvas trousers, trench coats and Dries’ brilliantly casual suiting. Colourwise, he focused on white, navy, beige, grey with the odd touch of electric blue to keep us on our toes.
Many coats and jackets had sleeves in different fabric and colours, others heavily featured stripes and checks – often together on one piece. Tracksuit bottoms surprised a few, but mostly we were impressed by the beautiful colour combinations – just how we like our Dries!
DD: There were quite a few army influences in the show!
Dries van Noten: Yes, it was very traditional in that sense. We worked with British manufactures, some old ideas and few new developments.
DD: Like what, for example?
Dries van Noten: A double woven fabric from the 1930s which no one is making any more.
DD: Generally speaking what was the main influence?
Dries van Noten: I wanted elegance, but also a dynamic elegance. And not so serious, more playful.
DD: Did you play around with print contrasts this time?
Dries van Noten: Yeah, I love different fabric combinations, and then it becomes quite versatile.
DD: What was the idea behind the music?
Dries van Noten: I wanted it to be a bit individual, and I thought about all the kids playing music from their phones on the bus.
DD: Are you still working towards a “sartorial feeling” which you mentioned after your summer show?
Dries van Noten: Yes, It’s got to do with the shape of the jackets and the length of the pants. I work very hard to get the proportions right.
DD: A favourite piece from the show?
Dries van Noten: It would be the khaki motorcycle pants with a beige double breasted jacket on top!