Diesel Black Gold shows in the same warehouse as Alexander Wang, but lately, that’s not all the two houses have in common. Since Sophia Kokosalaki took the helm four seasons ago, Diesel’s ditched distressed denim for sleeker fabrics, while keeping the brand’s rock & roll beat alive. Voilà: this season’s leather jackets, corseted harness dresses, and boyfriend trousers, all rendered in luxe metallics.
Stepping away from jeans steers Diesel closer to brands with a different gene, that of the refined tough girl (Wang, Rag & Bone, etc). Boxy lamé tops were bold, not sweet, while oversize Oxford shirts lent a menswear vibe both strong and confident. The result was utilitarianism more sexy than gritty, a look few brands can master. With last season’s front row Hollywood stars (Vanessa Hudgens, Chace Crawford) replaced this time around by fashion demigods (Carine and Julia Roitfeld), it seemed industry veterans have noticed the change afoot. As they should: Kokosalaki’s effort to revitalize but not reinvent the brand is as attention-worthy as the shimmering silver flares she sent down the runway.
**All photos by Imaxtree