This season, Assembly New York designer Greg Armas explored the contrast and overlap between work and play. The resulting collection was playfully polished. It had the label’s signature cool kid vibe without trying too hard.
“It’s all about blurring a line,” said a very hands-on Armas, who was literally going back and forth from backstage to up front with the models just to check that everything was perfect. “The intention is taking the office and the after office and crossing those over. We see it in playful ways like tank tops over dress shirts–sort of vacation over business. We also took neoprene, which suggests summer and scuba, and reworked it as a trench so it fits into winter.”
He explored the concept through prints as well. An abstract black and white print was actually a photograph of a beach that Armas obscured beyond recognition to became a polished blouse and pants combo with no hint of summertime. The ever-conceptual CFDA finalist also explained that slash in the collection’s work/play title translated in more literal ways as well, with diagonal lines appearing in various prints and constructions to mimic the slash.
The ‘play’ aspect of the collection’s theme definitely made for a slightly more laidback showing than seasons past. Stiffer fabrics like starchy white shirting, denim and army duffel were styled with looser proportions (the denim tracksuit from Look 4 is a perfect example). High necklines felt more relaxed than uptight thanks to clever layering and quirky accessories. Bright, chunky necklaces and bracelets, round sunglasses and wedge-tennis shoes (part of a Converse collab) all added a refreshing sense of humor.
Photos: Leandro Jenson for BFA