The self-described “modern traditionalists” team up with high street retailer River Island for a dark and cinematic AW14 collection
British-Dutch duo Wouter Baartmans and Amber Siegel of Baartmans and Siegel have been recently announced as the latest menswear label to collaborate with high street retailer River Island. The London-based pair, who met while working at Viktor & Rolf, consider themselves to be “modern traditionalists,” always championing an aesthetic that epitomises innovative design, but one that is deeply rooted in classic craftsmanship.
The 12-piece AW14 Baartmans and Siegel for River Island collection will be available online and in selected UK and international stores this September 2014. The film noir inspired line features a strong male protagonist, with references to the dystopian works of Phillip K. Dick and film director Michael Mann. Sharply tailored outerwear and structured jackets are central to the collection, as the classic men’s colour palette of navy, black and charcoal is reimagined by Baartmans and Siegel into cool and distinctive pieces for AW14.
The partners say that when working on the capsule collection’s concept, “We felt it was important for us to carry through our identity of indulgent masculinity with our signature fabrics and refined classic silhouettes. River Island’s responsiveness and huge industry network has allowed us to maintain our high level of craftsmanship, which has been most refreshing. We have also been able to explore new technical aspects that we have wished to create for some time, which has been key in helping to create an accessible wardrobe with effortless style.” Having now drawn the attention of industry press, the duo’s new River Island collaboration reaffirms their position as “ones to watch.”
To accompany the release of Baartmans and Siegel for River Island, a short film directed by Ryan Hopkinson (below) was premiered at London Collection’s: Men in June. The film forms part of British Fashion Council’s Fashion Film initiative, which, now in its sixth season, aims to recognise the ongoing development of fashion film as an important industry medium, while helping to foster relationships between fashion designers and fashion filmmakers.
Words: Steph King