Dutch designer Iris Van Herpen combined the metaverse with haute couture and 8th Century literature to mark the label’s 15th anniversary.
Widely known as a transformative force in fashion, Iris Van Herpen once again showcased her innovative talent for combining technology and craftsmanship with a future fashion outlook to present an haute couture collection that seemed to defy gravity.
For autumn/winter 2022 couture, Iris Van Herpen was inspired by Ovid’s ‘Metamorphoses’ poem to showcase looks built around the three myths of Daphne, Arachne, and Narcissus to break down the lines between reality and digital realms and ask the question of who we are beyond a perceived reality.
These myths inspired ethereal futuristic dresses, highlighting Van Herpen’s intricate craftsmanship, fusing 3D printing to create her signature shredded kirigami form with sustainability using a biodegradable fabric originating from a species of banana called ‘Abaca’ where fibres are extracted from the banana plant’s stem and combined with raw silk, as well as upcycled organza.
The result was 16 physical dresses that looked organic and alive, some looked like they were growing around the model, while others looked like they had insect wings and tendrils.
Van Herpen also showcased the first vegan haute couture dress in collaboration with ice cream brand Magnum, which was made from cocoa bean husks that have been processed to create a fully organic biopolymer material.
The Magnum Vegan dress, worn by model Cindy Bruna, features intricate details including plant-like body embellishments, which are copper-coated, draped and entwined with upcycled and pliseed organza, while other 3D elements were printed using innovative SLS technology (Selective Laser Sintering).
Commenting on the Magnum collaboration, Van Herpen said in a statement: “As a designer, I have always worked to push the boundaries of design and this collaboration has really allowed us to take this one step further by linking the ingredients of an iconic Magnum Vegan to create a Haute Couture design. The opportunity to work with the brand on such an innovation in sustainable fashion has been a very special experience.”