This was Yang Li’s first collection since Belgian fashion fund CLCC SA took a majority stake in his business in April. No drastic upgrades were evident, but the collection was notably stronger than recent outings, which have seen Li develop his dark romantic side to uneven results.
This season, he didn’t abandon that gothic softness, opening the show with crinkled tailoring — trousers with crude edges and sweeping jackets worn open over lace bralettes — that cast a shadowy sexiness. But masculine, military inflected outerwear felt like a refreshing return to the sharp, urban edge of his early collections.
Two of the best pieces were an oversize navy coat and a mannish trench, both poetically roughed up with patches bearing lyrics from the song “Screen Shot” by Swans, which was also the show’s sound track. Phrases like “No dream,” “No sleep,” and “No lie” embellished jackets and more feminine tailored separates. Using words as decoration can come off as gimmicky, but here they read like badges of street cred.