Apujan AW20 draws us into a distorted dream like state, a realm that resides between fantasy and reality, in the middle, lies this established brand’s, latest collection. Hosted in the Du Vere Grand Connaught Rooms the collection was showcased in a fitting setting, the elegance and sophistication of the enchanting location, enhancing the fantasy experience.
Apujan constructs their own timeline for this season, we no longer exist in past, present or future, we stand in ’The Cloud-Making Factory’ a fusion of literature and science fiction. This parallel universe introduces clouds and stars manufactured by machines, pterodactyls, spaceships, and antique expedition aircraft travel amongst them, floating above the chimneys, gears, conveyor belts of the technology that shaped them. “It’s like a fairy-tale fantasy between imagination and the real world, in our imagination there is a factory, making clouds and moons and stars it’s a special place, every season we are always inspired by some literature, science fiction and some creative fantasy stories”.
Designs unite elements of two contrasting time periods, combining distinctive past fashion trends with futuristic techniques, fusing the two eras through a single garment. A chaotic timeline is formed as the ready to wear collection including headwear, scarves, knitwear and evening gowns, guides down the runway, our reality skewed.
“Tents in the Clouds” by Monica Jackson and Elizabeth Stark, “The Cloudspotter’s Guide: The Science, History, and Culture of Clouds” by Gavin Pretor-Pinney, “Stories of Your Life and Others” by Ted Chiang and “The Paper Managerie and Other Stories” by Ken Liu, just a few iconic titles that inspired the creation of this collection. These stories are woven within the details, from the prints of the garments to enchanting music of the runway “Every season we will have a book list, which book, which novel inspires us after I will buy a lot of copies of those books and send them to the music director and hair and makeup director and the print designer”.
Much like the stories that inspired them, this collection signifies another chapter for in Apujan’s story, specific details are drawn from the minds of the designer, fabrics are stitched instead of covers bound, graphic prints are fashioned instead of words written, each collection offers a complex addition to the manuscript of the brand. “Every time we like to use a collection to speak a story and every season another paragraph, our collections describe how time is moving by, it’s some looks from the future and some looks from older days”.
Undiscovered details are littered across pieces, tucked away and cleverly masked, building upon the intricacy of the garments these features act as secrets, scattered across the fabric, a beautiful metaphor for the fantasy injected within this collection, imagination and reality unite. “We always wonder who is going to wear our clothes and where they are going to be, we keep so many elements in secret within the clothes, if somehow the wearer can open the secret, that makes us very happy”.
Western Silhouettes shared with elements of distinguished oriental detailing offer a contrast between traditional and contemporary, cheongsam buckles and oriental collars feature on shirts and coats, a stunning juxtaposition fuelling the concept of disjointed time.
Apujans renowned original prints join us for another season, jacquard fabric and transparent embroidery combine with delicate silks and soft cashmeres. “We spend lots of time to doing fabric, I think that’s one of the most important things for us, we wish that our clothes just open like a book, we even print some pages, we tell a story”.
A technological aspect is also introduced within AW20, digital prints and complex computer-generated knitwear techniques further enhance the concept of machinery in the creation of design. Much like the machines that craft clouds and stars, Apujan craft a visual array of wearable art.