So Thom Browne might be wondering how his shorts got to London and who dyed them pink. Yet surely there can’t be another soul around with reason to feel anything but benevolent toward this Sibling collection.
A frothy jolt of rose-tinted, school-days, Anglo nostalgia garlanded by teddy bears, Muppet-esque moments, and plenty of abs, this collection had something for everyone in the room to revel in. My personal yearbook favorites were the crumpled brown-paper-effect short suits, biker jacket, and jeans meant to evoke the homemade schoolbook bindings Sibling’s three designers remember from their formative years. These three looks excepted, almost the entirety of this collection—from the too-much hair gel to the Chelsea boots—pulsed with pink: Even Cher Horowitz might have reckoned it excessive.
The opening section played with tropes of British school uniform—international readers should think Harry Potter styled by Liberace—and included rowing blazers (pink-heavy), rebelliously loosened ties (pink, and occasionally bejeweled) pink mittens, pink school socks, and pink house scarves. The pink shearling school shorts and matching jacket were especially powerful.
Scene thus set, Sibling promptly panned back to Play School, chucking in sweaters made from a fur-esque substance so patently (and flammably) artificial it made the Shrimps fakes that have been so popular here of late resemble Fendi. This poly-something abomination of a substance was here to honor the memory of the “gonk,” a now-obscure felt-footed toylike charm that was everywhere in the seventies. Teddy bears, knowingly naive-knitted, climbed like pygmy pink koalas up lapels or loomed over models’ shoulders. That pink hair, picked fraying, latex paneling, and biker-jacket shadows—not to mention the Ramones on the PA—pointed to punk. Informed by a genre of fashion show defined by Vivienne Westwood and recently refined by Jeremy Scott, this was a deeply shallow, shallowly deep delight.