Paolina Russo SS24 Spring/Summer 2024 Collection at Copenhagen Fashion Week
Monolithics Zalando Visionary Award winner Paolina Russos SS24 collection brings the London-based label to Copenhagen Fashion Week to present its first runway show. A contemplation of the passage of time and the marks that the brands warrior heroines protagonist has left on the world on her pilgrimage through it, rune-carved, rainbow floors evoke the suburban nostalgia of the carpets found in the heroines childhood home, the pastel chalk frescoes she would scrawl on the pavements outside, and prehistoric cave etchings. Standing stones made with upcycled bottles simultaneously recall ancient stone circles and futuristic Earthship structures. Meanwhile, the soundtrack she strides to harmonises folkloric flute trills and birdsong with cloud rap and ethereal, new-age trance.
A tension between artefacts from the distant past and those created to be found in the distant future informs graphic motifs and embellishments. This seasons gradient denim pieces a key expansion of the Paolina Russo universe and created using low water-intensity fabrics and production processes see the brands pastoral floral insignia airbrushed and laser-etched into boleros and miniskirts, jackets and baggy jeans, like high-tech reinterpretations of ancient stone carvings. The result of a direct creative dialogue between Paolina Russos co-creative directors and the technicians at Pizarro a sustainable denim laundry based in Porto each piece exemplifies the brands desire to challenge and modernise the meaning of craftsmanship, and to allow collaborative experimentation to lead innovation.
Denims classic indigo and tobacco tones are echoed in signature warrior knit bodice tops, bralettes, and flounced miniskirts, which also reoccur in mottled earth and polychrome crayon box colourways. A testament to the ecological consciousness at Paolina Russos heart, this seasons iterations intentionally lack hardware and are fashioned from unembellished, lightweight cotton monofiber yarns, making them completely biodegradable at the end of their life cycle.
Elsewhere, jersey bermudas, sweatpants, hoodies and tees appear in chalky, sunbleached pastels, decorated with imprints of primordial relics or the bleached-out memories theyve left behind. Theyre also seen at larger scale across rainbow-hued illusion knit pullovers and miniskirts, and semi-sheer, patchwork column dresses that bring the Paolina Russo warrior womans stoic elegance to the fore.
Her athleticism and dynamism are accentuated by breathable technical activewear, lycra separates and one-piece swimsuits; the latter pieces figure in acidic tie-dye hues with neo-tribal riffs on classic sports graphics, echoing the look of 00s surfwear. Bias-cut dresses in printed chiffon extend the brands commitment to a practical, comfort-minded approach to dressing, and are designed with easy dressing for a diverse range of body shapes in mind.
Where fastenings do appear, it is as CNC-carved wood-and-metal relics, designed in collaboration with Yuma Burgess, the creative mind behind the shows Neolithic set. Featuring engravings that echo those seen on the runways stone monoliths, they serve as physical tokens for Paolina Russo's folkloristic-yet-future-minded visual language, appearing as toggles and integrated talismans on druidess-worthy ruched jersey boleros, skirts and dresses. A soundtrack scored by Swedish musical trio Team Rockit offers an aural foil to collections core spirit.
The jagged Beyblade medallions that debuted as resin earrings in the brands AW22 collection are reinterpreted by Parisian jeweller Colombe dHumires as metal garment buckles. Theyre complemented by a wider jewellery offering that encompasses wispy, spiral earrings, object-strewn shoestring belts, as well as Leo DMBs charm necklaces.
Imbued with the aura of ancient heirlooms, as well as of eerie relics descended from a far-off future, they epitomise the ethos at Paolina Russos heart the recontextualisation and celebration of yesterdays craft practices to articulate an aesthetic anchored in tomorrow.
Photo: Press Paolina Russo
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