Pedro Lourenço on His Collaboration With Melissa, His First Comme des Garçons Show (He Was 7) and His Biggest Challenge
Melissa, the Brazilian-based brand that churns out candy-colored mold-injected plastic shoes, is no stranger to collaborating with artists, architects and designers--it's part of who they are. Past design collaborators include Vivienne Westwood, Jason Wu and Gareth Pugh, just to name a few. Their latest collaboration is a fitting one, as it's with fellow Brazilian designer Pedro Lourenço.
A much buzzed-about name to watch, Lourenço showed his first ready-to-wear collection in Paris to critical acclaim when he was just 19.
SAO PAULO--Wunderkind designer Pedro Lourenço (he's just 21) presented his resort collection at Sao Paulo fashion week this past week. It's his first resort collection and the first time he's ever shown his designs in his hometown even though both his parents are designers there--he showed his first two collections in Paris to much critical acclaim.
Lourenço presented his collection a la runway shows of yore (and Tom Ford last year): in an intimate setting in the back room of a luxe hotel in Sao Paulo, Lourenço stood in the center of the room with a microphone and described each look in his collection, one model at a time. Occasionally Lourenço would forget a detail, and ask the model to come scurrying back and turn her around to show off a particular seam or fabric.
Of course, I was inferring all of this as Lourenço presented his collection in Portuguese (luckily he was on hand to translate later). But it was easy to tell just from looking at the clothes that they were a slight departure from his past two leather-heavy collections.
PARIS--The word wunderkind is often attached to Brazilian designer Pedro Lourenço--and for good reason. Though he's only 21 and has just shown his fourth ever collection, his designs show a depth and maturity far beyond his years. It probably has something to do with the fact that both his parents are established designers in Brazil and, according to his father Reinaldo, he's been sewing since he was three years old. But I digress...
This spring he told me he was inspired by the idea of a toy soldier army and green architecture. They might sound like wildly disparate sources of inspiration but it worked on the runway.
PARIS--Pedro Lourenco is 20. He's Brazilian. His parents are designers. And he says that he's been designing professionally since age 12.
There is plenty of hype around this wunderkind, but not as much as one would expect, given the extreme skill it takes to create what he creates. As I waited in the Beax Arts building on Paris's left bank for the show to begin, I got a taste of what Lourenco is capable of. Several of the organizers--either his personal PRs or sales people--were wearing Fall 2010 Lourenco creations. In camel and black, the heavy wool pieces were made of blocks of fabrics that looked as though they had been fused together, some molded into curvy pleats.
PARIS--Confession: I didn't see Pedro Lourenço's show in person. Chalk it up to being a Paris Fashion Week rookie--I took the metro to the wrong venue and then got slammed in horrible traffic when I tried to take a taxi to the correct location (thinking a cab would be faster--I was wrong). As I pulled up to the Ecole Des Beaux Arts I saw Susie Lau leaving. "I missed it!?" I yelled stepping out of my cab. "Yeah, sorry," she said, looking actually a little sorry for me, because, she added, "It was really an amazing show."
I was disappointed to have missed Pedro Lourenço's fall collection as I wanted to see the boy wonder who wowed the critics last season in Paris in action (though I guess he's not a teenager anymore, having just turned 20). Last season his collection was all leather--intricate work that was impressive to see but perhaps not as practical to buy and to wear. Lauren predicted this season Lourenço would veer more commercial--and he did. He dropped the leather obsession and went softer, using wool and fur on primary colored long sleeved dresses, skinny pants and knit tops, all done in mod-ish patterns. Looking at the photos, I'm even more peeved I missed the show. Tant pis.