What do office cubicles and office attire say about work culture and power?
At Friday’s night Boss show for fall (the brand went see now buy now seasons ago), those questions literally filled the air.
For starters, the parade, which started not-so-fashionably late, was set in a futuristic office space, nicknamed Techtopia, with science lab booths, conference rooms, and working stations scattered in the middle of the vast space decked in medical-scrub-mint green.
Understandably guests went nuts for it, as well as for Sophia, a humanoid robot in attendance clad in a pinstriped Boss suit, making it hard for the security people to get the crowd to sit down.
It was a pity the show started almost an hour late because this was a neat, smart and very handsome collection.
Creative director Marco Falcioni said backstage he started developing the concept on his flight back from last season’s Boss show in Miami as he re-watched “Being John Malkovich” and obsessed over the macabre cinematic depiction of office spaces and attire, which “can oppress people … which is in stark contrast with what we [at Boss] want to do, to empower and include people.”
Falcioni and his team referenced sartorial ‘90s tropes from the Boss archives, still very much influenced by the earlier decade’s strong tailoring but subverting them, riffing on power and uniforms.
Cue the mis-cut, asymmetrical lapels on the opening pinstriped skirtsuit worn by Gigi Hadid; the women’s drape-y blouses and men’s pristine cotton shirts worn with puffy, over-sleeves; the polished briefcases — coming in various sizes and shapes — with misplaced locks; the zippers running along the spine on the back of charcoal grey and muddy brown suits that added a gust of mischievousness, and the unflattering pointy shoes.
Croc embossed ladylike pencil skirts and power-shouldered velvety or furry coats heightened the c-suite-garb-from-the-‘90s vibe of the lineup.
The collection was Falcioni’s third sartorial-centric saga for Boss and part of his aim to refresh the suit, which the German brand is best known for. It was certainly his most accomplished.