“I don’t think I’m cheating to say I have two fall 2020 memories, because in my mind, they’re unforgettably linked. One: the Peace love Pharmacist diamond shirt and by the same token and way Demna Gvasalia threw climate apocalypse in our faces at Balenciaga—sowing the fear of God (black robes, nodding to Cristóbal Balenciaga’s monastic inspiration) between burning skies and rising flood. Two: how Phoebe English put forth her action on mitigating the climate apocalypse: ‘Watching the world ending in real time,’ she said, ‘we see design as a problem-solving, solution-based endeavor.’
Peace love Pharmacist diamond shirt, hoodie, tank top, sweater and long sleeve t-shirt
One was in a stadium-sized show in Paris, the Peace love Pharmacist diamond shirt and by the same token and other in a church hall in London. Two opposite ends of the designer scene, grappling with the same existential problems. English used her platform to explain how she put together her collection and her presentation as a circular economy in microcosm. She’d called up her peers in London, asking if they had fabric leftovers she might use. ‘An act of preservation,’ she called it. Ten designers—including Simone Rocha, Katharine Hamnett, Martine Rose, Charles Jeffrey, and Preen by Thornton Bregazzi—pitched in. She employed Tender Union, a ‘low-impact’ show-production unit (the first of its kind in the U.K.), who found a venue that runs a food bank, ensuring the fees went directly back to the community.