2020 has given Area a new perspective. The sudden halt in their previous routine was taken as an opportunity to break out and explore different ways and times to present their collections. The overall goal became a dedication to creating pieces that are treasured – that fill an emotional need and elicit confidence whether it’s an earring or a couture gown.
Unveiling their debut Couture collection on January 28th, 2021 the idea to create a Couture range came organically for Area. Over the years, designers Beckett Fogg and Piotrek Panszcyzk have garnered a cult following of loyal fans and VIP clients who turn to the downtown New York-based design studio for bespoke pieces featuring Area’s modern and timeless take on beauty and glamour.
“For our debut Haute Couture collection we wanted to highlight our passion for custom tailoring, we feel like every type of body is beautiful and unique in its own way, we wanted to highlight that by playing with a range of silhouettes created to complement the wearer, showcasing that beauty and craft can feel exclusive in its core but at the same time include a range of body types. We like to create our own visual fantasy through fashion and craft, but on the other hand, it’s important that our viewers can envision themselves in our pieces.
With this Couture collection, we want to showcase our ability and dedication to creating beauty by hand. Every look in this collection has been developed over an extended time of 6 months and has been an ongoing collaboration between our studio in New York and our embroidery partners in India/globally. We are proud of all the hands that were involved in creating every single look, craft truly comes to fruition through a collaborative community and passion.”
– Fogg & Panszcyzk
Organza Crystal Tags
The brand started creating their own coin motifs by cutting thousands of tags in organza that were all individually finished by hand with a graphic line of crystal. These tags then get sewn into graphic repeats creating soft, fluffy, and relaxed gowns and long hair pieces cascading in graphic strands.
To juxtapose this softness, they created sharp tailoring that’s hand encrusted with hundreds of metal tags that demand attention through shine and the sound of the metal dancing on top of each other.
For these pieces, the brand was looking at South African Ndebele woman who has a rich history of personal adornments and their expression through arts and crafts. They started great body-conscientious dresses like ribcages that swirled around the body, contouring shapes. For color, they wanted to create a painterly ombre effect, this was especially complicated because of the swirled shapes of the panels.
This was their tribute to Grand Couture. The designers wanted to showcase the technical pattern skills by creating sculptured accordion dresses that were slashed on the side revealing the body, playing on the idea of the cake gown.
Multi-Color Crystal Drape
The brand wanted to create liquid-like looks by fusing a range of rich colors like sun, fuchsia, aqua, going into crystal clear and back into color, the drapes follow the body elegantly and start opening up around the hips and cascade into a fringe.
They started experimenting with knit and crochet in their RTW and their crystal cup chain dresses and capes are usually inspired by traditional crochet. For their inaugural couture collection, they wanted to take it to the next level and combine the signature cup chain crystal with a crochet. They plated hundreds of yards of crystal in yarn and crocheted cups inserted with large gems and crafted it all into a netted cape releasing in a soft fringe. A panier dress is created by crocheting hundreds of yards of crocheted cup chain to a hoop creating a soft cage of crochet crystal and fringe.
Crystals by Swarovski
Photography by Justin French
Video Direction by Ned Rogers
Styling Clare Byrne
Hair by Latisha Chong
Makeup by Raisa Flowers using Makeup forever
Manicure by Yukie Miyakawa
Casting by Bert Martirosyan
Art Direction by Julia Wagner
Production by Counsel