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A new narrative of fashion week?

Reconstruct Collective’s upcoming presentation redefines the experience of a show. 

Fashion week is a bustling bay of shows, clothes, people, and luxury parades. It is the highlight of many a calendar and, a lot of folks would say, the epicentre of the industry. Let’s be honest, we also indulge in the hype, the drama, and the glamour of it all. One overpowering sensation that never fails to leave the corners of our brains however is fashion shows’ premise on carrying out a performance of perfection. After the designer takes their final bow and the front row heads back to press, which of the show’s elements are we truly able to retain?

Since Fashion Week’s inception in the ‘40s, the narrative of the “fashion show” has been revised yet remains hardly genuinely transformed. We know the premise and the drill: you display your very best on the very best, for the very best. Though this notion is synonymous with the fast-paced industry, the cultural clock of fashion is ticking and, generally, these performances are not quite catching on to the new and the now of today. Still, amidst the staleness of tradition, the barriers of perfection are gradually but surely being torn down. One brilliant (and local!) example of change is Reconstruct Collective; a rising Dutch fashion brand made up of five women, who are tirelessly re-interpreting the relationship between fashion, performance, and perfection.

Reconstruct Collective began, very fittingly, through the people. After being told that their graduate show was cancelled, the five founding women joined forces and raised enough funds to stage their own show. Already displaced from the social norms of a “fashion show”, Reconstruct Collective saw an opportunity to evolve beyond the predetermined narrative and present their own world, envisioned society, and ideas on perfection. Their very first show presented to us a refreshing array of gender-non-specific looks, a diverse cast and an open-invite to the show. By ditching the hierarchal establishment of a traditional show and turning it on its head, they swiftly had us in their palm.

The fashion brand has the same philosophy today; there’s no backing down for Reconstruct Collective. This Saturday, we’re heading over to ISOamsterdam to ogle over their new A/W20 collection. Sticking to their own tradition, the Collective will be basing their designs upon 5 distinct characters and will celebrate their individual identities alongside their success as a collective; a formula they follow for each presentation. This year’s concept is all about “The Redundant 5”, who know one another from their boring office yet are also bound by their individual superpowers that guide them on their mission to better the world. Relatable much? Joining in on the presentation are also visual artist Lisette Appeldorn, stylist Ricardo van Lachterop, designer Hans Lensvelt and Space Encounters, musician Franky Sticks, and Eva Bomert from Atelier Pamfillie, each contributing their flair to the one-hour collaboprative endeavour in re-thinking fashion presentations. And as if this isn’t exciting enough, the Collective have also prepped an after-party programme as a follow-up to the show, so we surely expect to see you there.


29 February, 20:00—01:00

ISO Amsterdam


Words by Grace Powell

Photography by Lisa Elean

Styling by Reconstruct Collective

Make-up by Ayse Karssen

Illustrations by Bo Yuan