Wednesday 23rd September

| BY Claudia Croft

Coach: Ready-to-Wear SS21

What’s a big brand to do? A global pandemic interrupts the delivery of your autumn collection, leaving you with a pile of unsold, pristine merchandise. This is a very real problem faced by brands all across fashion. Rather than opt for landfill, the incinerator or the discount outlet (the usual end-points for such gluts of unwanted fashion), Stuart Vevers at Coach, has come up with a creative and sustainable solution.

His idea is to recontextualise pieces from the AW20 collection and show them alongside vintage, archival and new Coach designs for SS21. He’s called this major exercise in high fashion up-cycling, Coach Forever. “I wanted to find new ways of doing things,” said Vevers, who used vegetable-tanned, naturally-dyed leather for his accessories and made totes from recycled plastic bottles.

For the Ready-to-wear, Vevers took an artisan approach. Craft was brought to the fore with looks created out of up-cycled remnants and vintage pieces personalized with embellishments and embroidery. Vevers said, “it was important to me to challenge how we create our collections, and consider their impact on our communities and the planet. I’m excited to keep exploring that through designing and learning, and to have brought this to life with Juergen and our Coach Family.”

He shot the look book remotely, around the world and produced a film featuring Coach favourites, Kaia Gerber, Kate Moss, Debbie Harry, Megan Thee Stallion, Cole Sprouse, Paloma Elsesser, Hari Nef, Binx Walton, Lexi Boling, Bob the Drag Queen and Rickey Thompson. The end result is a collection bursting with heirloom charm and choc-full of timeless pieces that speak more to personal taste than throw away trends. Vevers is leading the way. Imagine if all the big luxury players adopted his upcycling approach? Waste not, want not? We want it.

Photography by Juergen Teller.