Black carpet, walls cloaked in black curtains and four oval-shaped mirrors set the scene for LUAR’s Spring/Summer 2023 runway show at The Shed in NYC. As the lights faded to black and silence seeped into the room, anxious attendees smiled in anticipation of the impending drama. Once the main spotlight bounced off one mirror onto the model entryway and the beat dropped, out came the first look accompanied by a roar of assurance from the crowd.
As look after look cascaded across the black carpet, it became increasingly clear that Raul Lopez’s designs were about confidence and power, just as much as they were about modern luxury. Titled LA ALTA GAMA (meaning high-end in Spanish), the show saw models move down the runway before stopping to check themselves out in the mirrors. Some models smized while others tossed in a quick vogue move before sauntering away with a smile. Regardless of the action, the clothes and the models who wore them cast a spirit of power and unwavering allure.
Even with this attitude, the latest collection from Lopez had a deeper meaning which was derived from his family experience. Specifically, what their interpretation of luxury was. “I was thinking of my family reunions in the 80s and 90s when Dominicans were migrating to New York and that sense of what they thought luxury was,” said Lopez. The beige and navy blue tech dress that opened the show perfectly represented what Lopez would see within his family as he took the tech jacket draped over a chiffon dress look and transformed it into a singular ensemble. But that was just the beginning.
Following shortly behind were crocodile and ostrich embossed blazers with asymmetrical single button closures, overcoats, geometric print tops, relaxed pants with pleated detailing, hybrid trench coat dresses, pinstripe suiting, blissful denim floor-length skirts and more. Across many looks, what stood out amongst Lopez’s contemporary tailoring was the inclusion of strong, boulder-like shoulders, which serve as a representation of how Lopez would hide himself when he was younger. But with the latest collection, it is clear that those feelings of intimidation and fear have fallen away.
Finishing off the looks was the brand’s signature trapezoidal handbag in several sizes, fabrications and colors. Whether it be a garment or an accessory, LUAR’s SS23 collection confirms its creation of widespread luxury that is daring, confident and sexy.
“The physical manifestation of Luar is merging the tech and the luxury, the high and the low and bringing it together to make it symbiotically work.”
Check out SS23 collection in the gallery above.
In related news, WHO DECIDES WAR SS23 offers up a taste of the Caribbean.