Luxury conglomerate Kering has teamed up again with famed New York City design school Parsons to create Empowering Imagination, a competition for graduating fashion design students to contend for the chance to score a prestigious internship at one of Kering’s brands. While each finalist has presented a thoughtful body of work, one designer, Gamu Moyo, caught our eye with her fashion forward yet very wearable menswear collection. For her Fall/Winter 2014 collection, Moyo focused on Rumspringa, the Amish rite of passage where adolescents leave their closed off communities to live in the secular world before deciding to devote the rest of their lives to the church. The designer asks what one might do when venturing from a strict home life into a more free society and her answer is: skateboarding. Moyo blends the more formal aspects of Amish wear including minimalistic garments, lack of buttons and zippers, with the laid back feel of the skate lifestyle. The result is an unexpected “cultural assimilation” of sorts represented by clean lines, modern cuts and updated silhouettes with just the right amount of design detail to make it special – think of it as more formal urban wear. Mixing cultures is something the Zimbabwe-born, South African-raised designer describes as her design ethos and Rumspringa is a perfect representation of her personal voice. This is one menswear designer to watch.
- Matthew Shrier