Dear Diane and Shaded Viewers,
Last week I visited the showroom of Tim Coppens, the Belgian menswear designer who works in New York. Coppens graduated from the prestigous fashion program at the Antwerp Royal Academy and cut his teeth working for Adidas and then RLX. The sportswear and design mix fit well with his teenage years spent around skateboards and graffiti. Cliche, perhaps, but it's a part of Coppen's design language of combining tech and luxe fabrics into an interesting mix of streetwear-influenced design, and by that I don't mean expensive sweatshirts, but complex, innovative garments, such as a thick virging-wool coat with oversized polyester sleeves that manages to be both dressy and sporty. Zippers and leather details are in abundance for additional urban armor and of course bomber jackets are a must. But what's great about Coppens's work is that he can take the familiar (dare I say, tired?) and make it fresh.
Coppens keeps it in his Belgian family (Tom van Dorp styles his shows, Natalie Joos does the casting). The Christopher Wool inspired graffiti print was also created by Coppens's longtime friend, who prefers to go unnamed. But you know my position; the more Belgians in fashion the better.