For his inaugural collection as creative director, women’s, of Diesel Black Gold, Andreas Melbostad employed numerous themes reminiscent of his days as the designer of Phi, bringing forth lots of leather and a penchant for asymmetry and metallic embellishment.
There was a new twist in his pre-fall effort as well, one that had more to do with his new home — denim — than his personal heritage.
“I’d done very little denim previously,” the Norwegian-born designer told WWD, “but coming to Diesel was very inspiring, both in seeing what can be done with it as far as structure and engineering, and in the way it can give a collection an aesthetic lift.”
As the upscale, contemporary sibling of Diesel, the billion-dollar-plus denim brand founded by Renzo Rosso nearly 35 years ago, there is “an ongoing debate about how to incorporate denim in the collection, as it should be,” said Melbostad. “It’s not something we would want to overdo, but raw denim is a very important part of the evolution of Diesel Black Gold and I’m just beginning to see some of what can be done with it.”
In the pre-fall grouping, the fabric is an integral part of a statement that suggests a modern American biker, appearing in both raw and coated form in jeans cut on the skinny side, in jackets shown layered with longer outerwear and as trim in other pieces.
“When I first met with Renzo, it seemed like a natural fit,” the designer said. “There was an exploration of what denim could be, and I had a good feeling about doing a collection that was a little more accessible from a price standpoint.”
In searching for a creative director to succeed Sophia Kokosalaki, Rosso said, “We needed to find somebody who came not from the Diesel world but from the world of designer and luxury, who would respect what we are and also had the respect of the market. Who could upgrade the line and show us where it needed to go.”
Rosso, who last month added a majority stake in Marni to the Only the Brave Srl stable that houses Diesel and the Black Gold collection, had a positive sense about Melbostad even before discussing the DBG job with him.
“I was so much in love with the Phi collection,” he told WWD. “It was very sexy, very dark with lots of metal — actually, very much me.”
Rosso views Black Gold, founded in 2008, as a natural fashion extension for a woman who is 35 or older, may have grown up with the Diesel brand and is ready for something with more fashion, quality and modernity, as well as a contemporary price point.
At about 55 million euros, or $72 million at current exchange, DBG’s 2012 sales are dwarfed by Diesel’s 1.1 billion euros, or about $1.45 billion. The care and nurturing of the collection are a high priority for Rosso as he shepherds high-fashion properties such as Viktor & Rolf, Maison Martin Margiela and now Marni through an uncertain, fickle market.
DBG is sold in the contemporary departments of department stores and in contemporary specialty stores, but its own retail footprint has been limited to a store on Greene Street in New York’s SoHo district, with plans for stand-alone stores in Tokyo and, later on, “the most important towns in the world.” While Rosso is careful not to mix the upscale with the more mainstream to too great an extent, DBG is sold in dedicated space within the best of Diesel’s 400-plus stores around the world.
Rosso declined to provide sales goals for the collection but was clear on his direction for the collection.
“Andreas has the hand for luxury and the contemporary, and we have the denim hand,” he said. “We have joined hands but we have to be careful that it has its own identity. We don’t want to contaminate it.”
“What he has done at Vuitton is really exceptional,” said @gameofthrones’ actress Gwendoline Christie on @mrkimjones’ final show for @louisvuitton. “He has rebooted luxury in terms of making it commercial, viable and contemporary. And most importantly artistic. He has never compromised his artistic vision for the sake of commodity.” (📷: @zefashioninsider)
After seeing a demand for men’s wear from its customers, British contemporary women’s wear label @ariesarise has added a men’s wear component and will launch a unisex collection with @mrporterlive. The 20-piece collection includes jackets, denim, logo T-shirts and more with deconstructed ‘90s vibes. Set to launch on January 18, you can shop the pieces on Aries’ website and on mrporter.com. #wwdfashion
“And so spending so much time with a character who thinks like that, inevitability you try and analyze yourself and go back and think about your own demons and dark chapters that you had in your life,” says @thedanielbruhl of his role in TNT’s “The Alienist.” The show, set in the Gilded Age of New York, also stars Dakota Fanning and Luke Evans. Head to WWD.com to read about how 39-year-old Brühl prepared for the role and why he thinks the show is so relevant to today #wwdeye ( 📷: @Eriktanner)
Now that Celine Dion’s collection has topped $10 million in sales, the pop superstar, fashion icon and newly-minted industry player is eyeing growth in Asia. Read the full report by @tiffanyap, link in bio. #wwdnews #celinedion
“My personal philosophy to beauty is paying attention to oneself. I love to be outdoors, lots of fresh air, trying to take care of yourself as best you can. I always notice that comes through,” says Felicity Jones, the global face of @shiseido-owned @cledepeaubeauteus, which launches today. Head to WWD.com to read more about the actress’ love for beauty and how she prepared for her new role in “The Basis of Sex,” playing the young Ruth Bader Ginsburg. #wwdbeauty (📷: @dandoperalski)
Among the familiar faces at @off____white’s show was a surprise figure: Japanese artist @takashipom, pictured here on Wednesday morning. Other show-goers included @jerrylorenzo, who spoke about his upcoming project: a @nike collaboration for back to school, with designs inspired by his childhood on the West Coast. Sitting in the front row were Future, Don Crawley, @miguel and more. See the rest of the photos on WWD.com #wwdeye (📷: Stephane Feugere)
According to @laurentsai, former “Terrace House: Aloha State” cast member, she didn’t know she was auditioning for the Japanese version of “Real World.” “I was telling a couple of my friends and someone’s like, ‘That sounds a lot like Terrace House.’ I was like, ’No it can’t be.’” Turns out, it was. But Tsai isn’t just a reality star — she’s an illustrator who has worked with Starbucks Japan and most recently, she’s dipping her toes into the fashion world. Head to WWD.com to read about her time on the show, modeling and her art. #wwdeye (📷: @danieldorsa)
More changes are coming to New York Fashion Week: Beginning with the spring 2019 collection, @alexanderwangny will move his New York show to June from September, adopting a biannual schedule with collections shown in June and December. Additionally, the @cfda is planning for an official summer/winter fashion season taking place as soon as June and December 2018. Read more about the upcoming changes on WWD.com. #wwdnews #wwdfashion (📷: @slovekinpics)