Band of Outsiders – Spring/Summer 2017 Full Fashion Show

 

Let’s get one thing out of the way at the outset: comparing the Band of Outsiders label that came down the runway here Sept. 10 during New York Fashion Week to the one Scott Sternberg helmed until it shuttered in May of last year is like saying that “The Joy of Cooking” and “Mother Goose Nursery Rhymes” are sort of the same book because they both mention lamb.

It is true that CLCC SA, the Luxembourg-based fashion investment company backing the re-booted Band brand, owns the intellectual property of the label launched in 2004. And it’s also true that the names are nearly identical; the original was “Band of Outsiders” (an homage to Godard’s 1964 film “Bande à Part”) while the new one is “Band of Outsiders Los Angeles,” which officially appends the original label’s hometown (though the company is no longer based in L.A.) But where Sternberg seasoned his preppy aesthetic over the years with a sprinkling of eclectic inspirations that included Robert Altman films, René Magritte paintings and the occasional Atari video game, the new creative team seems to have “The Breakfast Club” on an endless loop.

That’s because the men’s and women’s offerings are presented as the class of spring/summer 2017, a band of misfits, underdogs and square-pegging round-holers symbolizing the archetypes served up so perfectly in John Hughes’ 1985 movie. While that’s hardly uncharted territory when it comes to presenting an apparel collection, what the trio of designers — Florian Feder, Niklaus Hodel and Matthias Weber, who studied together at Antwerp’s Royal Academy of Fine Arts – have tried to do is layer in the notion that these archetypes also stand in for the different neighborhoods of Los Angeles.

“If you look at Venice it’s completely different from Hollywood; if you go to Watts, it’s completely different,” Hodel explained backstage in advance of the runway show. “That’s why it’s such a good inspiration for us for the future [of the brand]. Only in a big city is it possible to have all these people in one classroom, one graduating class. You have the quarterback, you have the shy guy … in the end the inspiration comes from all these different characters.”

Band of Outsiders | Spring Summer 2017 Full Fashion Show | Exclusive