It’s finally haute couture season again and of course, Virgil Abloh started it off with a bang. Debuting his first haute couture presentation since the pandemic, Abloh titled this year’s Fall/Winter 2021 ready-to-wear collection “Laboratory of Fun.” Abloh expresses that he spent a lot of time thinking and redesigning Off-White during quarantine and looked for ways to elevate the brand and turn it into something that feels more “adult.”
“I was writing in my journal that Off-White should be adult,” Abloh tells Vogue. “I’ve already said that it’s a youth brand adjacent to streetwear—and I get frustrated if I don’t feel an evolution, and the message becomes monotonous. I feel the world’s changed.”
The collection is absolutely stunning, juxtaposing jewel tones such as deep royal blues, bright oranges and rich yellows alongside very neutral shades of white, grey, black, and blue. There are very few prints in the collections but Abloh makes up for it with texture, giving us a surplus of fabric choices from shiny leather to velvet to a really beautiful structural neoprene that is just excellent.
The show opened Paris couture week featuring not only a variety of silhouettes but a diverse group of models. “I’ve always believed in diversity on all ends of the spectrum. Age, gender, orientation—when it comes to representing that, you know we’re across that as best we can,” Abloh states.
Abloh also opened the newest Off-White flagship in Paris after opening three other stores in London, Taipei and Milan.