UKRAINE SUPPORT: Fashion designers in London are using their influence to promote the “An Hour For Ukraine” initiative ahead of Christmas.
The event will see major British landmarks such as Trafalgar Square, Canterbury Cathedral, Lambeth Palace and the Scottish Parliament in Edinburgh, and several other key locations in Paris, New York and Sydney switching their festive lights off for an hour at 8 p.m. local time on Wednesday, the darkest day of 2022.
Organized by the president of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelenskyy’s fundraising platform United24, members of the Ukrainian parliament, fashion and creative platform 1 Granary, and War Against War, an alternative media organization, “An Hour For Ukraine” is part of a $10 million fundraising drive for generators for hospitals across Ukraine this winter.
Olya Kuryshchuk, founder of 1 Granary, who was born in Ukraine and is now based in London after obtaining a bachelor’s degree in fashion design from Central Saint Martins, has urged brands to use their social media platform to encourage their followers to join the initiative and turn off their lights for an hour at home from around the world to show their support for Ukraine.
Confirmed participating designers include Charlotte Knowles and Alexandre Arsenault of Knwls, Richard Quinn, Charles Jeffrey, Chopova Lowena, Kiko Kostadinov, Paolina Russo, Masha Popova, Sinéad O’Dwyer, Eftychia Karamolegkou, Lutz Huelle, Duran Lantink, Robyn Lynch, and Goom Heo.
Kuryshchuk said “I am part of the global fashion industry but I am also Ukrainian. Part of my family is still in Kyiv and they don’t have electricity, heating, water, internet, or phone connection along with over 10 million people. The ‘An Hour For Ukraine’ awareness campaign is set up to bring attention to the humanitarian catastrophe in my home country.”
The initiative has received support from Justin Welby, the archbishop of Canterbury, and Mayor of London Sadiq Khan.
“Earlier this month, in Ukraine, I saw the suffering of Ukrainians who face the violence of the Russian regime, in a dark and cold winter without electricity. Jesus coming into our world shares in our life and our sorrows, and we are called to do the same with our brothers and sisters…That’s why I urge everyone to donate what they can to the United24 initiative, to help raise funds to pay for hospital generators,” Welby said.
Khan added that London will also stand in solidarity with Ukraine “on this shortest day and every day,” adding that “2022 will be a year defined by the heroism of the Ukrainian people in defending their homeland against President Putin’s illegal invasion. Whilst we all prepare for Christmas festivities this hour of darkness reminds us all of the hardships and privations being faced by ordinary Ukrainians every day as they live without power, heat and water in freezing temperatures.” — TIANWEI ZHANG
HEADING TO LONDON: Moncler Genius is decamping to London next February.
The brand said Tuesday it has secured a slot at London Fashion Week on Feb. 20 to unveil its next round of collaborations.
“London is a city where the world feels at home, it’s a global community championing diversity and creativity, and a natural destination for the next embodiment of Moncler Genius. The stage is set to give voice to a new roster of creative minds coming from all disciplines and spaces, each one expressing a distinct interpretation of the Moncler world,” the company said in a statement.
Moncler did not disclose the venue of the Genius event in the British capital nor the collaborators’ names, although Moncler chairman and chief executive officer Remo Ruffini had hinted at new developments during a Capital Markets Day last May saying Moncler Genius could also be about “art, music, movies, sports,” in addition to fashion.
The London move suggests renewed ambitions for the Moncler Genius project, following the recent focus on the Moncler and Grenoble brands, the latter focused on ski clothing and tech outerwear, and the acquisition last year of upscale street brand Stone Island.
Earlier this year, however, Ruffini’s decision to put a greater focus on those brands, and tweak the Moncler Genius strategy, was among the reasons the company’s shares fell by almost 6 percent in a single day in early May.
The brainchild of Ruffini, Moncler Genius was introduced in 2018 drawing a wide roaster of designers and creatives over the years including Richard Quinn and Matthew Williams of 1017 Alyx 9SM; Pierpaolo Piccioli; Simone Rocha; Craig Green; Fragment Hiroshi Fujiwara; Palm Angels’ Francesco Ragazzi, and Jonathan Anderson, as well as Rick Owens with a partnership in different veins than other Genius tie-ups.
The company has held one Genius event a year since 2018, usually in February, inviting designers to interpret the brand’s signature puffers with their own sensibility.
In 2021, the brand added a new layer to the experience by presenting its collections in September through a digital activation across five cities — New York, Milan, Shanghai, Tokyo and Seoul — and through the vision of 11 designers, in a single show hosted by 15-time Grammy Awards winner Alicia Keys.
This year, Moncler marked its 70th anniversary, kicking off a 70-day program of global celebrations with a performance in Milan’s landmark Piazza del Duomo at the tail end of the city’s fashion week in September.
As reported, February’s London Fashion Week is shaping up as a buzzy affair, and the Moncler Genius event is set to add further fuel. Running Feb. 17 to 23, the showcase is headlined by Burberry, with Daniel Lee’s debut for the house on Feb. 20. — MARTINO CARRERA
SHOW DATES: Project is headed back to New York in January with its more-intimate show format in the city’s Flatiron District.
The men’s and gender-fluid focused fair will be held Jan. 24 and 25 at Iron23 at 29 W. 23rd Street. It will feature contemporary brands from France, Sweden, Italy, U.K., Canada and Japan in addition to the U.S. Among the brands expected to participate are Alpha Industries, G.H. Bass, OAS, Want Les Essentiels, Officine Creative, Goodlife Clothing, Paraboot France, Tateossian London and Tricker’s.
Edwina Kulego, vice president of Project, said the show will “shine a light on prominent brands across a broad range of categories including denim, outerwear, contemporary streetwear, footwear, and traditional menswear. The diversity in gender-fluid fashion continues to be a highlight for retailers and we are excited to usher in the latest brands within that realm.”
The show will once again partner with New York Men’s Day, which is staged by Agentry PR, to highlight emerging brands at Project that it will also showcase at its event during New York Fashion Week in February.
Project returned to New York in July with a smaller show at Iron23 after surging COVID-19 cases forced the cancellation of its January edition. Before the pandemic, the trade show had been staged at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center. — JEAN E. PALMIERI