The JPG x KNWLS COLLABORATION DROP is today. Jean Paul Gaultier and KNWLS dropped a collaboration that fuses the disruptive femininity and fierceness of London-based label KNWLS with the punk rebellion, grit and glamour of French fashion house Jean Paul Gaultier and we are here for it. Great kick off of fashion month.
PG x KNWLS COLLABORATION
Diving into the Jean Paul Gaultier and KNWLS archives, with reference to some of their most identifiable tropes, the collection nods to the past to create a synthesised design language firmly rooted in the present. Each piece in the group has been on its own journey, reimagined and redesigned to make an irreverent, entirely new capsule. The colab has brought a new life to classic pieces.
With prints integral to the brand DNA of both Jean Paul Gaultier and KNWLS, the new motifs seen in this collection needed to be designed using playful, analogue techniques in keeping with the spirit of Jean Paul Gaultier and the brand’s most famous and recognisable designs. See: a hand-stencilled trompe-l’œil tattoo print inspired by heavy-metal ephemera – softer, but no less hardcore – features a wide-mouthed serpent poised to bite the wearer’s nipple.
Or a scratched wood pattern derived from a decaying fence that KNWLS’ Senior Print Designer Harriet Cox found lying on the street; she then hand-etched naive heart-shaped JPG KNWLS carvings into the wooden surface. Rooted in reality and undefinable by era, these prints feel instantly at home in the Jean Paul Gaultier archive.
Jean Paul Gaultier and KNWLS
Meanwhile, Jean Paul Gaultier’s knack for corsetry is applied to a tailored suit jacket and flared trousers co-ord. The house’s iconic marinière has been given the KNWLS bleach plaid treatment as a series of skin-tight, body-contoured mini-dresses and sheer, flesh-baring knitted separates defined by off-shoulder sailor collar and wrap-around silhouettes.
KNWLS signature aged leather takes centre stage as a distressed high-neck shearling jacket with oversized shaggy sleeves, a leather bomber jacket and a corset harness with rib inserts.
The denim – something both parties do best – references stonewashed trousers from a rare JPG diffusion line sourced by Charlotte and plays out as a corseted dress with conical cups hung trousers, a pointed jacket, and a bustier, complete with laced panels and cut-outs. There’s a lace-up top and shorts set, too, served in distressed lilac and ice-mint-washed twill stretch cotton.
La pièce de résistance ? An intricate corset costume in vert-de-gris-effect screen printed leather and hand-crocheted panelling that took the team and crochet maestro Harry Evans almost a year to construct. The look is partly reminiscent of KNWLS’ carefully constructed costumes that have been native to the brand since 2017, part statue undergoing the process of corrosion – something that was as iconic to Paris as it was essential to Jean-Paul.
The accompanying campaign is shot by a friend of the label and die-hard Jean Paul Gaultier fan Harley Weir, styled by Georgia Pendlebury and stars rising model Alex Consani, who perfectly embodies the spirit of the collection – from her effervescent energy, infectious sense of humour and striking looks, to everything she stands for as a trans-model fighting for better representation for trans and non-binary individuals. Influenced by late 80s and early 90s Jean Paul Gaultier campaigns, the resulting visuals feature a hand-cut logo and overexposed techniques. Analogue yet graphic, it perfectly encapsulates the DNA of both brands.
‘I’ve always been a fan of KNWLS’ work and have collaborated with them. Their world is connected to the legacy of Jean Paul Gaultier, and it made total sense to give birth to this collection inspired by the particular vision of the women’s body both brands have.’ – Florence Tétier, Jean Paul Gaultier’s creative director.
THE JEAN PAUL GAULTIER × KNWLS COLLECTION out now on KNWLS AND JEAN PAUL GAULTIER E-SHOP AND AN EXCLUSIVE LIST OF RETAILERS.
by @harleyweir and styled by @georgia.pendlebury ,the campaign is influenced by late ‘80s and early ‘90s Jean Paul Gaultier campaigns and stars rising model @alexconsani who perfectly embodies the spirit of the collection.
Creative Direction @florencetetier@knwlslondon
Set Design @alicekpk
Printing + Screening @melissaarras
Cop or Not?
jeanpaulgaultier.com & knwls.com
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