This season, Les Benjamins continues to bridge the gap between the aesthetics existing in the East and West with its latest sci-fi-inspired collection.
Titled “First Wave,” the new arrival highlights how traditional Eastern silhouettes and accessories have formed the basis of costumes in otherworldly films – particularly in the ‘80s – and plays on this adaptation with the Les Benjamins design blueprint. “Being German-Turkish, growing up I was hooked on sci-fi movies like Dune (1984), Mad Max (1979), and the original Star Wars trilogy,” says creative director Bunyamin Aydin. “I’ve always wondered why these Hollywood films had desert scenes and outfits from the Middle East. For me, this was super interesting so I created a collection rooted in Near-East and Middle Eastern heritage that offers a fresh perspective on our traditional costumes. Les Benjamins “First Wave” is my world of imagination.”
With this, the Fall/Winter 2023 collection comes together with sartorial styles and streetwear detailing mixed with symbols commonly used in the aforementioned movies. In the men’s offering, cargo pants are extra baggy with oversized pockets that add a military-style form and functionality. Acting as a protective second skin, jackets include boxy denim jackets and blazers with shoulder pads and strap details. Pieces also tie in wave patterns connecting them to the overarching “First Wave” title.
The oversized silhouettes in the men’s line are translated into the women’s range through puffer jackets and flowy dresses as well as power suits reminiscent of the ‘80s era. Balancing these garments with more form-fitting mid-layers, the brand crafts cinched skirts and tops that draw on the draping styles of kaftans. Both lines feature an array of theatrical accessories including balaclavas, hoods and rugged caps.
The latest collection drops in line with the brand’s debut in Korea this month. Celebrating the monumental new chapter, Les Benjamins teams up with retail concept store EMPTY to create an accompanying editorial lookbook. It envisions the “First Wave” desert-like universe by drawing on the warm orange, red and brown hues of the range to design an enticing backdrop. “Working with South Korean photographer Cho Gi-seok and the whole team at EMPTY was a great experience. It’s one of the first times a Turkish brand has worked closely with Korean creatives on this scale,” Aydin shares on the collaboration. “We’re connecting different parts of Asia, from Near East to Middle East to Far East. In a way, I want to bring the spirit of the old Silk Road back to life.”
Take a closer look at the collaborative lookbook in the gallery now. To shop Les Benjamins’ FW23 “First Wave” collection, head to the brand’s website now.