Edit ModuleShow Tags

Fashion Week MN in Review: Envision Fall 2015: A Menswear Moment


Published:

A look by Russell Bourrienne

Isaiah Stofferahn

Eighteen seasons in, semi-annual fashion show Envision has become the destination to see collections from the Twin Cities' top fashion designers. Produced by Ignite Models, V2 Nightlife, and local gallery Public Functionary, this fall's edition was arguably the most consistent to date. Established local designers, such as Russell Bourrienne, Caroline Hayden, and Kjurek, showed some of their strongest collections to date, while a crop of new names to the local fashion industry proved themselves to be ones to watch. Fine craftsmanship, innovative styling, and genuine fashion moments were on display throughout the event, which was held against the swanky backdrop of Orchestra Hall. The event also doubled as a punctuation mark to cap off the inaugural edition of Fashion Week Minnesota, which presented a week of events highlighting and celebrating the best in local fashion.

One thing was clear to just about anyone who attended this year's Envision fall fashion show—menswear was having a moment in Minneapolis. In an industry typically dominated by women's wear, it was refreshing to see some strong collections from a trio of menswear designers, from the established (Russell Bourrienne) to the up-and-coming (Cory Allen).

Russell Bourrienne

Since the early 2000s, menswear designer Russell Bourrienne has been a fixture of the local fashion scene, consistently showing his collections alongside the emerging designers at shows such as Envision and Voltage. Despite his longevity in the industry, Bourrienne never looks stale or outdated next to fresh-out-of-design-school whippersnappers, always finding a new way to innovate and update his signature style, which relies heavily on classic Saville Row–style menswear tailoring. For his fall 2015 collection, the designer—who has owned and restored 30 vintage three-speed bicycles—took inspiration from 1930s English bicycle touring, showing a collection of tweedy waistcoats and knickers, paired with modern style elements, such as a quilted bomber jacket. He also incorporated elements from women's clothing, such as a a portrait-collared shirt smartly styled with a shirt and tie, as well as Eastern cultures, as in a caped rain slicker inspired by a Chinese rain cape. It was forward-thinking and classic all at once.

tyler allix

Isaiah Stofferahn

Isaiah Stofferahn

 

tyler allix

 

tyler allix

tyler allix

Cory Allen

A new name to the Minnesota fashion scene, Cory Allen (né Cory Linsmeyer) had the other major moment of Envision with "Horse Power." The Wisconsin native is currently getting his MFA in fashion design at the University of Wisconsin—Madison, and was notably the only fashion design graduate of the University of Wisconsin Green Bay. But while new to the industry, Allen clearly has a sophistication beyond his years. His fresh collection of menswear was inspired, of course, by horses—which was especially apparent in his horse-sketched sweater and a dip-dyed camel coat that featured a mohawk of black horse-hair up the back. In an interview previous to the show, he explains, "This collection draws its inspiration not from equestrian or western horse gear, but from the actual physicality of the horse itself." Allen's conceptual approach to fashion was apparent in the collection, which combined textures of leather and wool in a neutral palette of black, white, and grey. The collection's biggest wow items—the sweaters—also showcase Allen's talent with knitwear, which are made from alpaca sweater he sources himself, working with local suppliers. Trust me when I say images are a poor substitute from seeing these finely crafted hand-knits in person. He also showed off a talent for leather-working in a leather backpack and varsity-style jacket.

tyler allix

Irv briscoe

Isaiah Stofferahn

Isaiah Stofferahn

Isaiah Stofferahn

tyler allix

Form over Function

Form over Function made its Envision runway debut with an moody collection dubbed "Paramnesia" by newcomer Lauren Kacher, a recent grad from the University of Minnesota's apparel program. Intended as a unisex collection, the collection played with subverting shapes and silhouettes traditionally associated with women's and menswear. It was intriguing to see the return of the man-skirt—first coming into popularity in the '90s grunge era, the man-skirt has recently been having a comeback, thanks to types like Justin Bieber and Kanye West. Paired with a suede motorcycle jacket in a soft grey hue, the designer managed to make a taupe-colored suede, pleated skirt look masculine—no easy feat. Elsewhere, she incorporated drop-crotch silhouettes and a stark white neoprene with bright-white sneakers, giving the collection more of an updated, street-savvy vibe while avoiding goth-style clichés.

Despite the fresh inspiration, the collection suffered from issues with fit and cohesiveness. The muted suede and wool looks didn't seem as if they were from the same collection as the glossy, sporty leather and neoprene ones, and while I applaud the concept of unisex fashion, fit is still integral—the female models looked as if they were wearing their boyfriend's too-big jackets. But finer points aside, it was a solid first effort from Kacher, solidifying her one to watch in the coming year.

Isaiah Stofferahn

Isaiah Stofferahn

tyler allix

Isaiah Stofferahn

Isaiah Stofferahn

Read more collection reviews from Envision Fall 2015 and local fashion week coverage, visit mnmo.com/lifestyle.

Edit ModuleShow Tags

About The TC Style Blog

From boutiques to salons to your own closet, TC Style will bring you expertly curated tips and tricks from the local shopping, fashion, beauty, wellness, and design scene. Odds are if you put it on, take it off, hang it up, or cut it out, we’ll tell you how to get it. Most importantly, we know that when you look good and feel good, you do good—the beautiful life is about much more than the material world. (But that won’t stop us from loving it.)

Learn about the contributing writers.

Have a style-related question? 
Email Online_Editor@greenspring.com

Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags

Recent TC Style Posts

Inside the Remodel of The Store at Mia

The Minneapolis Institute of Art's museum store gets a craft-oriented, modern update.

Feel-Good Holiday Shopping with Gifts from These Minnesota Brands

Shop local and feel good with these local brands that give back.

Shopping + Style Events for 11/14-11/19

The best local shopping and style events for the week, from holiday pop-ups to spring previews.

Now Open: Roe Wolfe at Galleria

The locally owned boutique moves to a permanent location within the Galleria's new north wing.

Goorin Bros. Hat Shop in Uptown to Close

The store opened in 2012 within the renovated Uptown Theatre
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags