Inspired by the complex symbolism of hair in asianic cultures, “visual fabricator” PWEN has teamed up with KERA, a fashion label for the thinking, new age contemporary, to come up with its latest Autumn/Winter collection.
“It is hair’s imperviousness as a natural substance that yields the deeper symbolic meanings and warrants the high place hair plays in the motif repertory of fairy tales and other legends. For although it is one of the most sensitive registers of temperature, and a single human strand is used in museum hygrometers in order to measure humidity for the purposes of conservation, hair does not register pain, except at the roots. It can be cut and curled, sizzled with hot tongs, steeped in chemicals and dyes without apparent suffering, and will go on growing, even abundantly in some cases, and is not even stopped by death.”
– From the Beast to the Blonde, Marina Warner
Dark, sophisticated, polished, gruesome yet romantic and beautiful.
The result is a range of couture looks that are both familiar and over-the-top theatrical, and a ready-to-wear collection of fabrics for order, with kaleidoscopic patterns that are nothing short of magical.
Read on for our exclusive insider’s preview into the collection.
MAIN COUTURE COLLECTION
This is a KERA A/W 2010 insider’s preview booklet which is available free for order online, all that anyone interested has to do is subscribe to join their mailing list.
Inspired by hair in traditional context as a memento that is kept close to the body.
Here are some detailed pictures of the inspiration swatches and art illustrations of the couture line that are mentioned in the booklet. The collection appears to be straddling the line between the definitions of Ready-To-Wear and Haute Couture, with a somewhat costume-like drama.
The extravagant form of the hairpieces of the Long Horn Hmong is most faithfully represented here as a statement about hair and its symbolism of abundance and wealth. Synthetic hair is used to question feelings of the grotesque that are invoked by ‘disembodied hair’ as body covering in today’s context, despite age-old traditional practices of keeping human hair on the body.
Weaving takes centrepiece in this second look, a play between different materials to explore tactility. The result is powerful, alluding to hair as a symbol of strength and virility.
Knitting is a strong representation of a binding into a bigger, collective whole out of a single strand of thread. This piece tries to ring out the stringy texture characteristics of hair as a material, and works according to the theme of hair as something which binds, something which can be viewed as a single unit or a collective whole.
READY-TO-WEAR FABRIC LINE
For those who can’t afford couture, KERA has also come up with a commercial fabric collection for its ready-to-wear line. These digitally printed fabrics are available for order from their flagship store and can be used on almost any form of application, and its beauty and allure have been much raved about in our circles.
The main interest in the concept of the collection– a juxtaposition of its organic texture with computer generated processes, a manifestation of the writhing vitality of natural material hair, and the ordered, cold beauty of technology.
Samples are, similarly, free to order through subscription online.
When you subscribe, a sample book will be mailed to you, with all the 11 new fabric prints on swatches for you to imagine and visualise with, labels with their names, serial number and availability in various mediums.
A few days back, we received an invite through mail from the good people of KERA, a package full of exclusive goodies to keep fans like us happy and excited about the newest additions to their brand.
This invite/poster was digitally printed on A3 sized cloth and neatly folded in the package.
KERA’s company namecards are lasercut in printed cardstock, with a visual identity that is coherent with the other printed material. It emphasizes the grid as a parallel with the motions associated with weaving. They are slotted into the promotional wallets before they are mailed/packaged, as something that can be kept after browsing through the sample books.
Buttons to promote and give a preview of the fabrics.
Loyal followers of the company blog get extra goodies:
A wallet featuring STARFISH, one of their new release prints.
KERA also sells box files and embroidered coin pouches, as well as the wallets and buttons mentioned above, in any of their new release prints. Their merchandise serves as brilliant ways to showcase possible applications of their prints.
Wrapped with one of the fabric prints.
Embroidery has been made to accentuate the patterns on the print.