Savile Row-trained designer Idris Balogun dedicated the launch of New York City-based brand Winnie to his late grandmother, who the brand is named after. After design stints at Burberry and Tom Ford, among others, Balogun set off to establish his own brand that, with its fifth collection, is a must-see every season.
The look: Edgy elegance. An air of maturation and sophistication, with hints of youthfulness.
Quote of note: Balogun teamed with artist Tau Lewis on the collection. The self-taught, Toronto-born artist’s hand-sewn sculptures and works and personal style were the starting point of the collection, but through the experience, Balogun homed in on the similarities between Lewis’ works, made primarily from reclaimed textures, and the Egungun Yoruba masquerades, which feature ensembles also made from everyday items. This collection also marks Winnie’s biggest women’s offering to date.
Standout pieces: The opening look, a shirt that buttons on the back and a long skirt with back pleating, plays on perception. An ivory double-breasted blazer has multiple textures, including wool crepe and wool gabardine for a subtle quilted pattern, also in reference to Lewis’s work. Also an ivory knit sweater has a single cable knit that goes up the front and separates to form the collar. And finally, Balogun’s first attempts at leather include a leather coat made from upcycled cowhide rugs.
Takeaway: Though Winnie is a personal story for Balogun, the designer aims to highlight artists with every collection and champion knowledge. The fifth collection has hints of his training and past experience with the top luxury houses in the world, and references to his culture and upbringing, and it’ll be interesting to see how he reinterprets artist’s works with his talents.