Martin Margiela was a fashion genius who helped us realize that a little white paint can transform trash into high fashion and ordinary accessories like a glove or belt can be the building block of a brilliant jacket. Forever the loner, Margiela's work for his eponymous brand stands on its own. But it is a testament to how much of an impact he's had on the way we view the things that we wear that he is often confused as a member of the legendary "Atwerp Six," along with Royal Fashion Academy graduates like Dries van Noten and Ann Demeulemeester.
Martin is no longer affiliated with the brand that bears his name, which was bought by Diesel in 2002. Since Diesel is only worn by Euro-trash and bros with delusions of style, many thought Maison Martin Margiela would fall in esteem after it was acquired. Although there have been missteps—like the release of almost as many fugazi colorways of the German Army Trainers as there are of Air Jordans—the brand has managed to stay relevant to the point that fashionable rappers like Kanye West regularly shout it out.
MM6 is the new Maison Martin Margiela diffusion line. Launching a diffusion line and announcing a fast-fashion collaboration as Maison Martin Margiela has done can often mean a brand is jumping the shark. The arrival of MM6 made me especially worried when it first surfaced because it has a logo—something Martin was famously opposed to, which is why he developed the signature "tick" marks that appear on the back of all Margiela garments. I attended MM6's first NYFW presentation filled with skepticism, but I was pleasantly surprised that not only does the secondary line not suck, it's actually pretty good.
Typically, I like girl clothes the most when they are extremely uncomfortable because I'm a chauvinist pig who wants to see women suffer for fashion. Just kidding. But I like "girly" stuff like super high heels and tight revealing dresses and the red leather. MM6 was definitely not that. It was all comfort—sneakers, khakis, flowy dresses, and soft breathable fabrics. What made it work for me was the fact that despite the comfiness of all the clothes, it maintained a high level of elegance. The collection MM6 presented for Spring/Summer 2013 is the kind of stuff you actually see girls wear in the real world, but it was produced with a high level of style, quality, and an eye for detail. Check out the photos above and look out for the new shop they have coming to Bleecker Street in NYC.
Check VICE throughout the rest of the week for more from Wilbert on what’s happening during one of the most vacuous and awe-inspiring events that fussy New Yorkers take part in twice a year.