Los Angeles-based lifestyle brand Bristol maximizes the glamor of nonchalance in its second collection.
Laid-back loungewear staples are given a touch of luxury as they are reinvented with refined crêpe, satin, terrycloth, and velvet in a rich color palette of gold, burnt sienna, cabernet, and navy. Slightly more structured pieces like plaid trousers, sherpa-lined jackets, and tops emblazoned with ribbon bows add a whimsical flair. From the frayed hems of cut-off jeans to the matching pajama inspired sets, the collection is permeated by a rejection of the fashion industry’s normative standards of sophistication, which is simultaneously an embrace of the athleisure trend popular among contemporary fashion icons.[slideshow]
Bristol’s innovative use of its showroom at New York Men’s Day further emphasized the brand’s trend conscious yet norm-defying character. Half of the room was left entirely empty, save for a cluster of cameras and projectors and a model who essentially used it as a runway. Two cameras recorded details of the rest of the models lined up on the other side of the room, while another faced the model on the makeshift runway, and all of this footage was projected in real time onto the walls behind it. A fourth projector played footage from a basketball game, pointing to NBA legends as one of the collection’s largest sources of inspiration. Loose t-shirts and hoodies, glossy tracksuits, and cropped pants inspired by the silhouette of basketball shorts, all styled with Adidas sneakers, are clearly marked by this influence.
The anti-fashion attitude of Bristol’s clothing is matched by the lackadaisical poise of its models, who stand or sit in slouched positions, with their hands in their pockets or jackets slung over their shoulders, occasionally doing a playful dance and frequently leaning against one another or tousling their DIY-looking haircuts. Some looks were modeled by women, indicating the unisex nature of Bristols fashions. The deliberate design of charismatic effortlessness requires a firm grasp of nuance, and the young brand’s tasteful styling and attention to subtlety demonstrate its mastery in this realm.
Photos by Reyna Wang