Tuesday, 22 February 2011


We all know a bit about the Russian Revolution 1917 which saw Russia changing from an repressive empire to a repressive communist state the USSR. Unfortunately, Russian people, even with Perestroika and Gorbachev. have never had the chance to live in a real democracy but I do not want to go to much into political details. The revolution I am talking about is the revolution of taste and luxury. Even in Russia, which used to be a brilliant market for all 'bling' and 'shine' luxury- in terms of if you have ' it ' flaunt ' it '. But Russian taste is going through a transformation which appreciates more and more their own young breed of designers instead of the big names like Chanel and Louis Vuitton. The concept of ' Less is More ' which slowly embraces Moscow's and St Petersburg own street style and  brings an awareness to young Russia designers about cultural roots and their recent history. Gosha Rubchinsky is the first Russian designer who is stocked and Moscow's answer to Collette, the dynamic concept store Magazin.
Gosha Rubchinsky grew up during a time Russia's politics and society was changing. He is one of the new breed of designers who is intellectually and creatively inspired by the fall of the Iron Curtain. Young people in Russia back then did not understand the concept of sub cultures and their codes, therefore they mixed everything. 

menswear designer Gosha Rubensky
After working as a stylist for 5 years he decided 2008 to found his own label Aglec. His designs are as eclectic as the way he presents his work. He mixes clothes with film and photography. Sporty, basic sweat suits, tank tops, star spangled boxer briefs together with spiked leather mask- everything goes, maybe best expressed by an outfit consisting of a jumper with the Russian double eagle embroidered in front with a pair of shorts with the American ' Star and Stripes'  motive as fabric print.

Empire of Evil collection SS2009

Empire of Evil collection SS2009

His presentations are both theatrical and and sociological, incorporating photos, movies and books. The space in which he stages his catwalk shows are very important to him. So for example his AW 2009 ' Growing  and Expanding ' was executed in a old school gym. Showing the same collection during the ' Cycle and Season' ( unfortunately every time I tried the website I got a blank page!? ) which is a more interesting alternative to Russian and Moscow  Fashion Weeks,  he again goes back to the school idea by having his models sit on a large wooden stair reminiscent  of auditoriums for lecturing students. 

Growing and Expanding collection AW 2009

Internationally, his reputation grew too. Beginning of 2010 he showed at Fashion East Man an installation of his AW2010 collection named ' Slave '. In Berlin he showed a retrospective ( I think after three collections at this point of time you can not really call it an retrospective, but well...) in form of an installation at the workshop of the fashion- edge, culture magazine 032c . And again contradictions like mood boards in the glass display showing architecture- both- sacral and soviet- which captivates the always underlying energetic tension of two oppsite sidea like communism and empire or dictatorship and democracy.


His next collection was called ' Rassvet Ne Za Gorami '. Sorry, I could not find out from anywhere what that means but it definitely adds to Rubensky's mystic. 
SS 2010
SS 2010

SS 2010

His work has been described as ' a personal take on uniformity of Moscow street gangs and suburb sportswear, mixed with political paraphernalia ( 032c magazine) '. Like Hedi Slimane or Raf Simons he is fascinated by the exclusivity of the ' boy club '. He cares about his models which he usually finds on the streets of Moscow or while skating. Asked what his dreams were, Rubinsky answered that either he would love to take over a couture house or to build a cultural camp for his young skaters to study, work and make art. 
Even with all his contractions and the not easy living situation in Russia's capital with a young generation not really aware of their powers and heritage- even with all his darkness he shows a very positive social responsibility to his surrounding and the people he loves. This is quite unusual for a young person who lives in a world which usually emphasizes the importance of the individual instead of family and friends.
The ' Slave ' collection AW 2010

The ' Slave ' collection AW 2010

The ' Slave ' collection AW 2010

The ' Slave ' collection AW 2010 
The ' Slave ' collection AW 2010- cover of the look book
Please go and have a look at his label's website Agelec. I am just intrigued by his use of print and movies to create his world. I think his clothes must be considered with his background of rich Russians love for big names, big diamonds and fakeness. His clothes are simple but the more I found my way through his work something started understanding him. Again, although his work seems to come from a darker side.  I have a very strong feeling of growth in me in regards to his his work. I think you will find in Europe and the USA right now a few outstanding designers which embrace a dark mystique and organic growth in their work like Damir Doma and Rick Owens but compared to Gosha's designs, these designers almost look playful sometimes even fussy. I think the darkness in Gosha's designs is executed in a cleaner and more sober way - he reflects somehow with his work a harder truth of reality. Gosha Rubchinsky will grow into an excellent designer with his ability to observe and question his surroundings but also to find his way towards his Russian heritage and will dress the people he loves. I can not wait till his SS 2011 is out. I hope soon. He is definitely one to watch.

The Fashion Philosopher

Sunday, 20 February 2011


I know all our senses are directed to AW 2011 right know but it is such a dreary, dull, wet and foggy London afternoon, that I decided to write a bit about the colours and new styles which have started to shout at us from all the wonderful shop window displays. I think we all want to start wearing colour and short sleeves again. Last week a stumbled across a sort of new label from Japan: Phenomenon by Takeshi Osumi also known by his Hip- Hop identity Big O. Strangely enough again a hip-hop label catching my eye but I think the reason for it is that street wear right know is growing up and using loads of almost couture like elements mixed with 1990's street style which makes a very interesting.

Takeshi Osumi aka Big O. 
Launched already 2004 Phenomenon had its debut for AW10 at Tokyo Collection Week and it is seen now as the driving force of Japanese street style with it's interest also by buyers from all around the world.

The S/S 2011 collection has been inspired a lot by the music Takeshi was listing to while looking for inspiration. House music from the 1990's is mixing with tribal house from the same time. Also the so called ' Chill Wave' genre such as 'Wash Out' gave the tone together with influences like Maori- tattoos which translated into the triangle motifs printed on organdy to give a ' trompe d'oeil effect of real tattoos on the skin. Even clear references to summer turn up in unexpected ways for example flies which are are rather annoying part of summer are used in form of bracelets or cover the labels of jackets.
The head scarf styling is inspired by 1990's rappers
The triangle pattern of Maori- tattoos printed on organdy

Leggings under shorts have been sported by male Japanese hipsters since last summer already. I was wearing it for my first day at LFW AW11 on Friday and was surprised that no one else was wearing it....
Here you can see the whole catwalk show for Phenomenon for SS 11

Couture influences in street style- the wicker vest

All pictures take from http://www.choiceisyours.jp/phenomenon/news/
I hope I could give you a little appetizer for the summer to come ! 
The Fashion Philosopher 

Friday, 18 February 2011


 In a brilliant mood I made my way to London Fashion Week AW 2011. The first thing I would like to mention is if you want to go and hang around get some warm clothes on. I was freezing in my leather jacket and summer scarf ( photo of my outfit will follow ) even with my bubbly from the morning I could not keep warm. I went to the exhibition and although it's worth seeing it but there are not really any menswear exhibitors around. I will try the next days to slip into one or two mens wear shows. But the interesting bit in London is anyway always how the people on the street dress.The shows you can see on any style website anyway. I tried edit just the ones which I found really interesting not the usual skinny- jeans- and- fabric- tote- kind- of- St- Martins- student-kind- of- guys. I must say it was surprisingly difficult to find stylish blokes around but the menswear day is on Wednesday 23/02. And I will definitely be there to find more sujets to photograph.

Looking at my pictures I have quite a range of ethnically different styled guys from around the world. I must say the Japanese have always one of the best style!

Don't tell me now a tunic doesn't  look sharp in town!

I think the style idea for this outfit came from the 2nd Earl of Rochester !!
I think it is really cool.
I hope you enjoyed the pics from the 1st day of LCW!
The Fashion Philosopher


Yeah, had already a glass of champagne, took me 3 hours to get ready. Listen 1000 times to Chaka Kahn ' Ain't Nobody' 
Enjoy!! The Fashion Philospher

Tuesday, 15 February 2011

Monday, 14 February 2011


' A man should look  as if he had bought his clothes with intelligence, put them on with care, and then forgotten about them'
 Hardy Amies

I think above citing describes Robert Rabensteiner's style very well. I think he looks as if he would not really care about what he is wearing but actually he uses clothes to underline his 'rough' masculinity and but adding  a very artistic sensibility to it. He looks like a painter, art curator or opera singer mixed with a bit of ' Heidi 's grand father but always in a 'cool' way . Like in his work as fashion editor for L'Uomo Vogue, his work as a stylist always conveys a certain theatricality of an ' old- style ' film set. I just love his style!!

Pictures above by Tommy Ton

All pictures styled by Robert Rabensteiner