Childhood memories are a key inspiration for Lindsay Degen’s work, which includes large-scale knitwear pieces — to be filed under “art” — such as tank tops with breast flaps, complete with pompom nipples, and pants designed with a third compartment to fit the male anatomy.
Before you jump to creepy conclusions, Degen, 23, grew up in Cincinnati, the daughter of two scientists who, she says, were always talking about the human body in a clinical way. Her work is a way of rebelling against that. She studied textile design at Rhode Island School of Design, where she graduated in 2010 and began collaborating on knits with VPL while showing her anatomical, oversize pieces in group art shows.
Now, Degen has tempered those instincts for her first capsule collection of lingerie, which she will present during New York Fashion Week in September under the label Degen. A full ready-to-wear line of knits and wovens is slated for February. “I wanted to keep it playful,” says Degen of her debut, which includes sets of bra tops and knickers, some with peek-a-boo cutouts in back (“for a little crack action”) as well as sock booties. “I didn’t want the collection to be that wearable,” she adds. Mission accomplished — although it is pretty cute!