Louise Xin Couture's politically-charged presentation proves that one dress can change the world
The Stockholm-based brand was launched in November 2020 by designer Louise Xin as Scandinavia's first rental-only non-sale couture label. The idea is simple: customers can rent out handmade dresses for special occasions in an effort to change consumption patterns and customer behaviour. Designs are created from as many upcycled materials as possible, and leftover fabrics are turned into handmade flowers and details to apply on the dresses.
Sustainability isn’t the only thing on this brand’s mind, humanity is too. For each collection, there's a project supporting a different humanity crisis going on in the world. This season the brand’s focus has turned to Uyghur and the forced labour that the region is subjected to. Louise Xin explains that one in five cotton garments in the global apparel market are tainted by forced labour from Uyghur. “We can't really talk about sustainability and totally ignore these facts,” she says. “We have both the responsibility and the power to change what's unjust. Together hand in hand with our customers we can contribute to a better world one fashion garment at time.”
Today’s digital presentation at Stockholm Fashion Week was part fashion show, part protest. Models, from varying backgrounds, swept down the runway in show-stopping gowns, handmade with tulle, lacing and 3D-floral appliqué detailing. All in a rich array of colours and luxe upcycled fabrics.
It wasn’t just the clothes making the statements, the plaques in the models’ hands called out for society to unite through slogans such as “I stand with Afghanistan” and “I stand with Tigray”. It culminated with a model, in a loosely tailored, newspaper print coat unveiling a sign with the words “Free Uyghur: end all genocide”.
Watch the presentation and see the full collection below:
Runway photography by Vanessa Tryde