Skip to main content

“Nothing is created. Everything is transformed. To love is to repair. It must be simple. We are repaired, we are reused… We are restitched, we are re-embroidered…”. So went the poem—written by Marine Serre—at the beginning of another inspiring public-facing show tonight.

Within her enormous runway space Serre had placed three soaring towers of deadstock—one of scarves, one of tote bags, and another of denim—that she said was a mere nothing compared to the stocks, otherwise likely landfill-bound, held in her warehouses. The point was clear but the effect was strong, and reminded me of Anselm Kiefer’s more abstract but equally apocalyptic installation The Seven Heavenly Pieces in Milan’s Pirelli Hangar. Pre-show, influencers threw pouting TikToks in their shadows.

In the heavily light-produced show that followed (it was sometimes a little too dark) Serre systematically set about showing what she could do with these materials. The first eight looks or so were crafted from the totes, and included the cropped jacket silhouette that would ricochet across the collection. The next set was denim, and featured one of my favorite fashion benchmates as a surprise model: her right hand casually pocketed, Caroline Issa wore a siren silhouette denim dress with Serre’s new moon breast inserts. Other looks featured jewelry fashioned from upcycled cutlery.

Then we pivoted to motorcycling gear, recycled. Backstage the model in Look 18 had told me “It’s so cool. I love it. I can move!” of her moto jacket and bodysuit, typical of a sleek, tough and conscious section. Next we hit knit: Look 20, on a proudly body-positive model, featured a patchwork “lozenge” knit fashioned from 15 or so pullovers. After that were upcycled or chemical-free processed leather looks—Serre’s own attire of choice —which sometimes came with some pulled-pile knit trims that understandably set their models in unplanned directions when used as face coverings. A series of sophisticatedly faux-sophisticated moon monograph pieces followed.

We were getting to the climax now, building tension with a swathe of house moiré looks interspersed with tapestry topped couture shapes and reclaimed upholstery fabrics. Then a series of pieces fashioned from strips of material, specifically scarfs, that were amongst the most compelling here. This was another highly effective and affecting collection from Serre, who when asked if there was an overall theme of this collection drew our attention to the poem at the top.