The spirit of 1953 made a pit stop in Berlin last week, courtesy of Levi’s Vintage Clothing. The retro-denim specialists’ traveling exhibition, a tribute to the hot rod and the culture associated with it, pulled into denim-focused retailer 14 oz. on Friday night to deliver a glimpse of a time when reconditioned roadsters were all the rage and distressed denim a by-product of wear rather than production.
On display were original images from Life magazine showing the rise of the drag race, a short film looking at the day of the drag strip by artist Aaron Rose and a look at the era’s do-it-yourself aesthetic, which promoted customization of cars and clothing. Created especially for the display were a pair of showpiece pants with a battered leather pocket and a vest with Jalopy embroidery and leather trim. A reproduction of a 1957 Fender electric guitar was also on display, antiqued to give it the same look of gritty wear-and-tear.
A vitrine showed 35 custom-made airbrushed sweatshirts by Von Franco, which will be sold in select boutiques after the exhibition has finished its tour. The homage to hot rod is designed to coincide with Levi’s Vintage Clothing’s spring line of archive-influenced looks including jeans, bomber jackets and fitted ringer T-shirts printed with stars or stripes — classic Americana with an edge.
Martin White, European sales director for Levi’s, described Levi’s Vintage Clothing as “reissues” rather than “reproductions” of the brand’s classic looks. The next exhibition will be centered around Detroit 1964 with a focus on early Motown.
With jeans priced at $250 in the U.S., and 249 euros, or about $323 at current exchange, in Europe, the line is selling authenticity to an aware audience. “We let consumers make up their own minds. A lot of denim companies tend to preach a bit,” White explained. His view is that Levi’s has been seen as a blank canvas for creativity and subculture, evident in the customizing craze of the hot rod era currently under the merchandising microscope.
Along with London, Paris, Stockholm and Milan, Berlin is one of Levi’s five European hubs. With progress in Russia, he’s hoping to see Eastern Europe gain traction, too.
The exhibit has already hit Los Angeles, Brooklyn, N.Y., and London and will remain parked in Berlin at 14 oz. until April 6 before heading to the finish line in Tokyo.
Levi’s Vintage Clothing will be back in town this summer for Berlin’s Bread & Butter trade show, exhibiting in the Lock section.
Harrods plans to remove the famous statue of Princess Diana and Dodi Al Fayed from the bottom of the Egyptian escalators and hand it back to Mohamed Al-Fayed. “We are very proud to have played our role in celebrating the lives of Diana, Princess of Wales and Dodi Al Fayed at Harrods and to have welcomed people from around the world to visit the memorial for the past 20 years,” said Michael Ward, Harrods managing director. “With the announcement of the new official memorial statue to Diana, Princess of Wales at Kensington Palace, we feel that the time is right to return this memorial to Mr. Al Fayed and for the public to be invited to pay their respects at the palace.” More on the news, with reporting by @loreleimarfil, at WWD.com. #wwdnews
@prada is introducing a new project at its men’s fall 2018 show this Sunday: “Prada Invites.” The fashion house invited four celebrated creative minds – @ronanaerwanbouroullec, Konstantin Grcic, @herzogdemeuron and @rem.koolhaas – to each create a unique item with its iconic nylon material. The designs will be unveiled on the runway show, which will take place at the company’s warehouse in Viale Ortles 25. #wwdfashion #mfwm (📷: @martinocarrera)
@kering_official is spinning off its stake in puma in an effort to focus on its luxury brands, the brand operator announced yesterday. “We are proud to have supported the turnaround of Puma, which now has unrivaled capabilities to take full advantage of the specific dynamics of its global markets and is poised to achieve substantial growth,” said François-Henri Pinault, Kering’s chief executive officer and chairman. Artémis will become a “long-term strategic shareholder” of Puma with a 29 percent stake. #wwdnews #wwdfashion (📷: @jilliansollazzo)
The fashion world mourns for celebrated street style photographer, Nabile Quenum, who died at age 32 in Paris.
Quenum, creator of the fashion blog “J’ai Perdu Ma Veste,” was a fashion week fixture, and regularly shot for New York magazine’s The Cut, among other outlets, and brands such as Louis Vuitton, Moncler and Adidas. He was also actively involved in the #NoFreePhotos initiative, which kicked off in the fall. Read more about Quenum in @kbsmoke's story on WWD.com. #wwdnews
@verwanggang and @maisonladuree have teamed up on a dessert collab called Vera Wang Pour Ladurée. The collection, which launched this week, features a specialty macaroon, as well as a wedding cake inspired by one of the designer’s gowns. “I could not imagine a more delicate or sophisticated creation to grace any couple’s celebration,” said Wang. #wwdfashion