- Kristopher Fraser |
The idea that gender is over sounds like a Ph.D thesis for a gender studies major at some liberal university in a coastal city. However, Palomo Spain, who made a triumphant return to New York Fashion Week: Men's this season, continuously works this thesis into their very brand DNA. The gender neutral clothing line from Spain and the artistic child of designer Alejandro Gómez Palomo continues to be a force to be reckoned with.
It has earned quite the celebrity following as well. Music superstar Beyoncé Knowles wore a Palomo Spain gown when she was photographed with her then newborn twins for the first time. "American Horror Story" and "American Crime Story" star Cody Fern recently earned the attention of the paparazzi for wearing a Palomo Spain suit to a red carpet appearance for G'Day USA in Los Angeles. Celebrities might not be an instant formula for brand success like they were once, but they certainly can get your brand the press and the beginnings of a small following.
Palomo Spain is part of a growing sector in retail
Titled "1916" Palomo Spain's fall/winter 2019 collection was inspired by Diaghilev's Ballets Russes and the rural Spain of the early 20th century. The basis of the collection was in classical, masculine tailoring, and focused on two main silhouettes — both concerned with the distance between the wearer's skin and the garment itself.
As brands like ASOS and H&M have introduced gender netural lines, Palomo Spain has shown the fashion industry how to approach this in a way where it doesn't look like women's clothes borrowed from the boys or just men in dresses. There was artistry here, from the Victorian era ruffles to the finely draped silks.
Going into their ninth season, Palomo Spain has proven to consumers and investors alike that there is a market for gender neutral fashion. While it is unlikely that these designs will be mass market, like most high-fashion brands, they have a niche audience, which has not only remained committed to the brand, but also grown.
In the past, buyers seemed slow to respond to the idea of genderless clothing out of fear of alienating their older, often more conservative customers who had the deeper pockets floating the business. However, sites like Ssense.com and Farfetch are now proud stockists of Palomo Spain, showing a slow, but steady shift in the market. Gender neutral is a brand new slice of the retail sector pie, and Palomo Spain is the luxury whip cream on top of the pie. What was once a taboo idea has managed to find its home among Fashion Week and consumers alike.photos: courtesy of Pelonio Press