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Chris Nick creates the modern flapper

His fall/winter 2020 collection takes cues from the 1920s, Années folles, the ‘Crazy Years.’

What happened in the ’20s, 100 years ago? They went roaring, années folles, as the French called them. The Jazz Age in the US, the Golden Age in Europe, emerging from World War I, descending to the Great Depression. It was the time of The Lost Generation, Ernest Hemingway, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Ezra Pound, Cole Porter. It was the time of the Surrealists, Andre Breton, Arthur Rimbaud, Charles Baudelaire. It was a time of radical views and paradigm shifts. It was the time of women’s suffrage and women’s emancipation, when fashion at last entered the modern era, with women ditching the restricting clothes in favor of comfort, slipping into short skirts or trousers. It was the time of the flapper, defined informally as a fashionable young woman intent on enjoying herself and flouting conventional standards of behavior.

It is in ode to these “Crazy Years” that designer Chris Nick de los Reyes came up with his fall/winter collection 2020.

“I started conceptualizing the collection December of 2019 and, as we entered a new decade, the ’20s came to mind,” he says. “The Roaring ’20s saw an explosion of art, culture, and racial pride. Social change was evident and economic growth was booming.”

Contrast that to these times, 100 years since, when we are between what seemed like a boom and what lies ahead, possibly a much-changed world that has survived a pandemic. “Very timely,” says Chris of his current collection that is a form of defiance, a chin up against the tendency to dwell in the darkness, just as the 1920s emerged from a decade of war and the Black Plague. “Fashion does not necessarily have to stop. We must look forward, seek advancement.”

More than giving Filipino women a temporary means of escapism, the collection celebrates the craving “for light, speed, fun” that this decade in the last century sought. In today’s restrictions, despite today’s restrictions, those cravings remain and Chris Nick lets them have it in fashion.

Whereas the flapper of the 1920s was a form of rebellion, in Chris’ interpretation, it is a symbol of strength. “The modern flapper in my eyes is dressed up in classics with a distinct aura of authority, sensuality, and wit,” he says. “And as a Filipina, she brings traditional Filipiniana into the current times.”

It is a time of fear and great uncertainty, but the modern Filipina maintains a positive outlook. With fashion as her outlet, she is unafraid to express herself, her individuality. “These women are leaders of change,” says Chris. “With a strong personality, attitude, and a whole lot of charisma, they are symbols of confidence.”

His collection at once conceals and reveals—but not too much, never too much—the female form in tulle, satin, silk, and wool mostly in black, the designer’s favorite color, the color of power, seduction, fantasy, and mystery.

Chris also plays with texture with a boldness he’s never had before, although his style signature mixing tailored pieces with evening dresses, embellishing masculine silhouettes with fringes, feather, and sparkle, makes each piece distinctly, unmistakably Chris Nick.


Source: Manila Bulletin (https://mb.com.ph/2020/09/04/chris-nick-creates-the-modern-flapper/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=chris-nick-creates-the-modern-flapper)

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