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Jean Paul Gaultier and Knwls unveil collaborative collection

By Rachel Douglass


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Jean Paul Gaultier x Knwls collaboration. Credits: Harley Weir.

French fashion house Jean Paul Gaultier has briefly stepped out of its typical collaboration format to unveil a new collection with London-based label Knwls.

For the line, the duo both looked to their own archives and drew on recognisable tropes to create pieces that offered a synthesised design language ultimately forming what was described as “an irreverent capsule”.

This could be seen in the prominent use of prints, which are integral to both Jean Paul Gaultier and Knwls, with the likes of hand-stencilled trompe l’oeil tattoo shapes and a scratched wood pattern referencing each of the brands, respectively.

Jean Paul Gaultier’s staple corsetry is also present, and can be seen in the silhouettes of tailored suit jackets and body-hugging mini-dresses, complete with off-shoulder sailor collars and knitted separates.

Additionally, Knwls has further been mirrored in the use of its signature aged leather, applied to shearling jackets, a leather bomber and a corset harness.

The item considered “La pièce de résistance” however is an intricate corset costume with a vert-de-gris-effect screen printed leather and hand-crocheted panelling that, according to a release, took the team almost a year to construct.

The garment nods to both Knwls’ constructed costume detailings, as well as Jean Paul’s corrosion experimentation of the past.

In a release, Florence Tétier, Jean Paul Gaultier’s creative director, said of the collaboration: “I've always been a fan of Knwls’ work and have collaborated with them in the past.

“Their world is really connected to the legacy of Jean Paul Gaultier and it made total sense to give birth to this collection inspired by the very specific vision of the women's body both brands have.”

Jean Paul Gaultier