Erik Frenken: "In my designs I like to push the boundaries".
Zoe Karssen is an artwork brand 2.0. That inspired designer Erik Frenken to design a unique and controversial autumn collection, Provided with 'wastes' in all kinds of creative and crazy forms. Embroidered, printed, woven and even personally applied to leather jackets by artists. For the winter collection, Frenken has further explored the Arts & Crafts theme. The result is a collection full of one-of-a-kind pieces. From sweatsuits with shiny paint strips to dresses with over the top paint splotches and huge ruffles.
"I wanted to accentuate the studio feeling in this collection," says Frenken. "From that free feeling of messing around, creating and experimenting in a studio. That is also how this collection came about: simply by getting to work with paint rollers and making paint stains in all kinds of ways. We then digitized these stains and processed them into striking prints and finishes. Like the shiny 'paint strips' on the sweatsuits: as if the fabric has been worked on with a paint roller... very cool".
In his designs for Zoe Karssen, Frenken explores the boundaries: "Between high and low, streetwear and dressed up, homey and clubbing... it's precisely these opposites that characterize the Zoe Karssen brand. Every piece is simultaneously tough, rebellious and sexy. A look at the lookbook provides proof. Just take the mini dress - which can also be worn as a top - with high shoulders, ruffles, puff sleeves and a unique enlarged 'paint stain' print with a generous sprinkle of gold. Wear straight jeans underneath or - for the ultimate 'bomb effect' - leggings with the same print, but in a calmer version. The print also appears in two other stunning dresses. Frenken: "I like to style such a dress with a NY cap... Indeed, that's the contrast between coolness and sexyness.
The fun element is not missing from this collection either. There are socks and jacquard scarfs with the characteristic Zoe Karssen bats on them. The bouclé-finished grandpa wrapcoat, with its brightly coloured colourblocked interior, is also a lot of fun. Other eye-catching pieces are two dresses and a blouse made of fancy shimmer jersey with all-over woven gold shiny 'paint spots'.
But don't forget the leather must-haves! Like the amazing black leather jacket, the sexy leather bustier and the quirky boyfriend culotte. Frenken: "And of course this collection contains another great suit. This time in a warm camel-copper colour, with modest puff sleeves and an ironed crease as stylish' accents."
Actually, the entire Zoe Karssen collection consists of 'fashion objects' that would not be out of place at a haute couture show. With the difference that Zoe Karssen's fashion is not only super wearable, but also affordable....
Showroom Noire, Hessenplein 2, 2000 Antwerpen
Patricia Verheecke: +32 497 426 557
Mote’l Amsterdam,Slijperweg 4, 1032 KV Amsterdam
Alexandra Brands: +31 638 28 64 87
Read more about Zoe Karssen on the brand page: fashionunited.com/companies/zoe-karssen