“For us, it was thinking about the wardrobe and ‘mundaneness’ of that and how Area fits into that,” Panszczyk told WWD, adding that “we kind of wanted to experiment with a new sense of cleanness — getting to embellishment in a new way.” The ability to buy now, wear now also came into play for the resort season — the collection is currently for sale on the brand’s e-commerce.
The idea of Pop Art — especially the dot and earlier sunray works of Roy Lichtenstein — became a direct reference for the collection’s graphicness and palette (although shot in stark black and white, the line also includes bright red, baby pink and light yellow). Panszczyk took the idea of dot motifs and whipped them into bulbous cabochon embellishments and Hotfix accents (the most prominent motif of the season); stars became bodies of signature, sculptural gold harness and leather crop tops, and waves were laser-etched into blue denim, including a debut motorcycle jacket.
“It was always about the denim for us, but we really started seeing that part is always growing, and it’s always so important to Area, but we wanted to diversify that world,” he said.
The resort collection grew the brand breadth in new ways due to fabric expansion, while keeping their signature glamorous, graphic and playful point of view at the forefront. For instance, printed Lycra catsuits (now signature to the brand after three seasons); the expansion of leather and introduction of tech cotton gabardine (studded half-star shaped bustiers and moto jackets embellished with polka dot cabochons); graphic jacquard dressing; a jersey T-shirt dress with polka dot embellishments; ribbed viscose tops with 3D star studs, and denim with foil and Hotfix crystal accents.
While the collection’s ample lighter-weight fabrications were a result of customer requests, it also signaled their strategy of expanding Area’s price range after moving production to Italy last season.