“I’ll take Paris,” you can imagine Sander Lak thinking as he scouted locations for his first full men’s runway show for his Sies Marjan label. His venue, the seventh floor of the Opera Bastille, provided an unparalleled view of the city skyline — Eiffel Tower included.
Seeing the big picture comes naturally to the New York-based designer, who had a peripatetic upbringing between the Netherlands, Malaysia, Gabon and Scotland. Hence his spring collection was actually a mashup of that season with six women’s looks and a smattering of fall men’s designs, which went on sale immediately after the show.
Likewise, the Dries Van Noten alum didn’t offer one definitive silhouette, but rather what he described as an exploration of fragility and male sexuality.
“It’s really about what it’s like to be a man, what it’s like to be a sensual, sensitive being. It’s not about the toughness of men. It’s really more about the breaking down of all of that, and the women are actually much stronger, in a way, than the men are in this show,” he remarked backstage.
Starting from a base of deshabille jersey pieces — think baby pink long johns, or a plum-colored singlet — he built up to chunky outerwear, ranging from a matted mauve zebra print trench coat to a sage green belted jacket in thick croc-embossed leather. “You almost could put a handle on it, and it’s a bag,” Lak said.
Flesh tones provided the basis for the color palette, though Lak is famously adventurous with his hues, which ranged from swimming pool blue to vibrant saffron. His medley approach made for a somewhat patchy display, though the boatneck shirts and languid pants emerged as clear winners.