Derecho – a Spanish word meaning “straight” or “direct.” As its name suggests, it describes a type of fast-moving, linear stormcloud that can produce powerful tornadoes that are both damaging and dramatic in nature. It is ethereal yet powerful at the same time. For the Sher by Twenty3 runway debut collection, we wanted to leave a similarly compelling yet celestial impression through the juxtaposition of soft and hard, embodying our mantra: Strength in Femininity.
The collection opened with structural pieces in dusky hues slashed with hints of black mesh, suggesting a brewing storm. Some elements from the Razor Collection are evident here, such as the stand-collar from the Malvina Dress. The storm intensifies through the use of large geometric sequins that evoke flashes of lightning against deep blacks before morphing into clean, structured lines of burgundy, conjuring the effect of the first rays of sunlight breaking through the clouds. Finally, the storm calms into ephemeral shapeless clouds of blue.
The collection also draws inspiration from our founder, Sherlyn – it is an interpretation of her triumph over depression earlier this year, during which she found herself embarking on a journey to discover the Sher persona within.
Sherlyn and I.
“I am building a fire, and every day I train, I add more fuel. At just the right moment, I light the match.” – Mia Hamm
I’ve always been interested in the dichotomy between the strength and grace of female athletes. It seems that whenever a woman dares to get stronger in pursuit of her athletic goals, she is mocked for having a “masculine” body.
Misty Copeland is the principal ballerina in the American Ballet Theater.
Serena Williams is number one in the world in women's tennis.
Ronda Rousey is possibly the most dominant athlete today, regardless of sport or gender.
All three are champions, and all three have been criticized for their muscular, “masculine” bodies. It’s come to the point where women everywhere are afraid of lifting weights, because they don’t want to look like a man.
Since when did strength and a will to win become synonymous with masculinity?
This dichotomy is what drives my interest in creating a sports-influenced collection.
Plus, ever since Sherlyn started on her fitness journey, her wardrobe has become increasingly taken over by her sports attire. It’s come to the point where she wears her workout gear to the office! It’s inspired me to create a collection that was a sporty version of fashion, rather than a fashionable version of sportswear.
Match Point employs a liberal use of mesh for a structured, athletic appearance, while soft, nylon-blend tech fabrics help bring out the strong, sharp lines of the designs. Tops and jackets are cropped so as to not restrict movement, while also revealing the physique you’ve been working for. The key feature of Match Point is that most pieces are reversible – this is symbolic of transformation, a reminder that fitness is not just a fad, but a change in your entire lifestyle.
Live fit. Lift it.
“In the depth of winter, I found within me an invincible summer.”
With the Lenore Collection from Sher by Twenty3, I wanted to bring to life the existentialist themes of numbness and disconnect in Albert Camus’ classic 1942 novel, The Stranger. The juxtaposition of isolation and living is a common urban phenomenon, with modern society often mired in an aimless existence. I also drew on Sherlyn’s battle against depression, and her recovery in which she finally uncovered the strength she never knew she had. We tend to forget that the bleakness of winter gives meaning to the relief of spring and the invincibility of summer. We must take the highs with the lows.
This juxtaposition is embodied by a colour palette of stark blacks and whites. The collection appropriates masculine silhouettes to create a new brand of femininity. Epaulettes, roll-up sleeves with button tabs, and flap pockets lend a militaristic, utilitarian feel to the garments, emblematic of the Strength in Femininity.
Embrace the strength and the darkness within. Challenge conventions, break expectations, live life on your own terms.
The Lenore Collection from Sher by Twenty3 launches Tuesday, August 11.
“She was sharp as a razor and soft as a prayer.” – Tom Waits
The Razor Collection from Sher by Twenty3 marks my first full collection for Twenty3, and is the first true representation of the new design philosophy that we’re injecting into the brand. I sought to embody all the qualities of Sher into the label, which is grounded in the idea that confidence comes from within. That is why I chose a monochromatic palette with varying shades of grey and black, because I wanted the subtle details in each piece to shine. The gaze is pulled to the strong, structured lines and exaggerated cuts, which is tempered by expert tailoring that accentuates the soft, feminine curves. The resulting pieces give the wearer an air of femininity while projecting an aura of unmistakeable strength.
While I created this collection with the modern working woman in mind, keep your eyes peeled for elements from the Razor Collection seeping into our runway collection for KL Fashion Week 2015. Here’s a hint as to what we’re working on – Derecho.
See you at the runway!
PS. Check out some of the campaign photos we snapped for the Razor Collection!