Backstage images (Photo credit – Eli Schmidt)/Runway images (Photo credit – Dan Lecca)
Swarovski Collective designers Tim Coppens, Creatures of the Wind, Tanya Taylor, Dion Lee, Tome and Rosie Assoulin showcased their Autumn/Winter 2016 collections featuring over 556,000 Swarovski crystals this past New York Fashion Week. In the second season of collaboration for 2016 collections, the Swarovski Collective designers received financial support as well as the opportunity to experiment with Swarovski’s extraordinary crystal range.
Tim Coppens referenced Japanese street looks, western accents, and rock stars Axel Rose and Jimi Hendrix in his signature outerwear and military-inspired jackets, featuring custom Swarovski crystal patch designs and Swarovski crystal pearls in his womenswear looks shown at New York Fashion Week: Men’s.
Tim Coppens: Runway Show on Wednesday, February 3 at Skylight Clarkson North
“Adding Swarovski is great way to add dimension to my pieces. The beading creates a 3D effect and reflects light in new and interesting ways that you cannot achieve from traditional fabrics. The technique of metallic Hotfix transfers was the perfect blend of modern technique that captured the DIY spirit that runs throughout.” – Tim Coppens
Creatures of the Wind‘s Shane Gabier and Christopher Peters, inspired by soft modernism with specific references to mid-century architects, furniture designers and graphic designers, such as Charles & Ray Eames, Carl Aubock, and Ikko Tanaka, created graphic surfaces by sewing Swarovski beads and stones onto garments in various patterns.
Creatures of the Wind: Runway Show on Thursday, February 11 at 46 West 24th Street
“As we develop each collection, every component becomes another way for us to create the full picture. From the silhouette to the color to the fabric to the finishings, every detail is important. This also includes the venue, the lights, the music – it all comes together to tell the story. We think of Swarovski as an integral component of this story – an opportunity to create a bit of the narrative through a very special material. It’s always important to us to re-contextualize elements, to ask the viewer to reimagine something they may think they know; using Swarovski in our own way helps us do this.” – Shane Gabier and Christopher Peters of Creatures of the Wind
Referencing a girl who wanted to look like the outdoors, and drawing from the interplay of lush botanicals and deconstructed geometric shapes, Tanya Taylor used layered Swarovski crystals to create intricate 3D-embroidered leaves and floral bouquets, adding dimension to crepe and velvet pieces.
Tanya Taylor: Presentation on Friday, February 12 at the Swiss Institute
“Adding Swarovski definitely amplifies my designs because it adds a dimension of print and drama to the collection. It is an opportunity to explore the layering of textures, both soft and fluid or sharper, more sculptural adornments. I design to express optimism and make our woman feel emotional. Crystals can be thoughtful, bold, glamorous, tactile — they add a depth and mood to every design unlike any other material. Our woman likes an element of surprise and crystals help pique her curiosity.” – Tanya Taylor
For a collection entitled APATURE, Dion Lee experimented with negative space, referencing the work of artist Otto Pien. Hotfix applied Swarovski crystal fabric created shimmering structural pleats in silk georgette skirts and dresses, and fabric perforated separates featured floating Swarovski crystals.
Dion Lee: Runway Show on Saturday, February 13 at Milk Studios
“Swarovski crystal was an important part of interpreting the creative concept of the collection, allowing us to experiment with light, shadow play and weightlessness. The crystals appear suspended, almost floating, in punctures throughout the collection. In other garments they are heat welded and pleated, creating a luminous contrast to the sheer panels that run in between.” – Dion Lee
Finding inspiration in the work of video and installation artist Mona Hatoum and conceptual artist Barbara Kruger, Ryan Lobo and Ramon Martin of Tome used Swarovski crystals to conceptualize crystal evil eyes placed on the back of garments and crowns to ward off evil.
Tome: Runway Show on Sunday, February 14 at Skylight at Moynihan Station
“Grids and lines of Swarovski crystals follow immediately from the art practice of our inspirations. We developed Hatoum’s heavy metals and Kruger’s collages and grids into geometric patterns, combining different textures in sharp formations.” – Ryan Lobo and Ramon Martin of Tome
Rosie Assoulin drew inspiration from contemporary artist Polly Apfelbaum, using Swarovski crystals in different colors and shapes to produce a repeating rainbow stripe effect on classic, crisp cotton poplin silhouettes.
Rosie Assoulin: Presentation on Monday, February 15 at 60-62 Gansevoort St
“We were excited to continue our Swarovski concept using color and shapes differently, while keeping it casual and fun. We used Polly Apfelbaum’s art as a springboard for that idea. The shapes and colors add a playfulness to the collection. Fall can often feel very dark and heavy. The crystals really bring a different element that makes it more lighthearted.” – Rosie Assoulin
Founded in 1999 following Nadja Swarovski’s collaboration with Alexander McQueen and Isabella Blow, the Swarovski Collective encourages emerging and established designers to explore the creative boundaries of crystal use and craftsmanship. The latest edition of the Swarovski Collective program spans New York, London and Paris fashion weeks, offering the designers year-long financial and crystal product support, plus the chance to win the annual €25,000 Swarovski Collective Prize, the winner of which will be announced in May 2016.
Swarovski delivers a diverse portfolio of unmatched quality, craftsmanship, and creativity. Founded in 1895 in Austria, Swarovski designs, manufactures and markets high-quality crystals, genuine gemstones and created stones as well as finished products such as jewelry, accessories and lighting. Now run by the fifth generation of family members, Swarovski Crystal Business has a global reach with approximately 2,560 stores in around 170 countries, more than 25,000 employees, and revenue of about 2.33 billion euros in 2014. Together with its sister companies Swarovski Optik (optical devices) and Tyrolit (abrasives), Swarovski Crystal Business forms the Swarovski Group. In 2014, the Group generated revenue of about 3.05 billion euros and employed more than 30,000 people. The Swarovski Foundation was set up in 2012 to honor the philanthropic spirit of founder Daniel Swarovski. Its mission is to support creativity and culture, promote wellbeing, and conserve natural resources. www.swarovskigroup.com