Combining two worlds for another season, London and Istanbul are united once again through Harem London AW20, a brand boasting genderless designs. Offering a collection for the travellers, this season promotes the notion of global cross-cultural identity alongside the concept of exploration. “I design for world travellers, I design for people who have wanderlust, I don’t design for a specific gender, I don’t design for a specific career, I design for people who are hungry to find something new”.
Eastern and Western heritage fuse, through design, layered upon by cultural influences to offer a diverse identity to the brand and its wearers, providing high quality fabrics formed using traditional techniques from Turkey.
Drawing upon their vast range of experience, the designer uses her theatrical background to offer the experience of being raised in Istanbul before moving to London. “I spent almost half my life in Istanbul and half my time in London so I'm basically fifty, fifty of both cultures. London fed me a lot especially with the cultural side as well, its such an amazing place where you can meet so many people”.
Designed for the travellers and those filled with wanderlust the flexibility of the collection is translated through a streetwear aesthetic, created through relaxed fits and comfortable cotton prints and knitwear. “This season my initial inspiration was travel, I was inspired by people’s wanderlust, I feel like people are chasing something, looking for something, there is an amazing thirst for travel”.
Complimenting each garment, the presentation offered a personal link to the designer, with old family photos acting as the projected backdrop for the designs. “In the projections you can see, these are my father’s photos he took in the 70s, so there are always different inspirations culturally, forty years later I’m bringing that into London, sharing it with people, it’s very personal”.
For the individuals, wandering, discovering the world, cosy fabrics and relaxed silhouettes create a sense of comfort and familiarity to the wearer, evoking soothing emotions related to warmth and security, wearers find a home away from home in Harem.
The minimalist nature of the designs offers a versatility to the garments, optimising the exploration experience, travellers have the ability to hop from airplane to, lunch to beach.
The collection offers a simplistic aesthetic, a notion translated to the wearer, a prompt to empty their minds and absorb the culture and atmosphere of the countries they find themselves in, a prominent concept embodied within the collection.
Natural shades appeal to all genders, a fitting colour palette for a unisex collection. “I think being aware of genderless is one of the most important aspects of the year and city that we live in which, it’s so amazing seeing people so open, people don’t judge, you can wear whatever you want”.
Photography - Sebastian Davies
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