1993 Structured Satin Jersey Elongated T-Shirt with Slashed Sleeves
Size JP M: Best for a Women's UK 8/US 6 or a UK 10/US 8.
Helmut Lang deconstructed top from A/W 1993-1994. In excellent used condition. Made in Italy.
The early 1990s were undoubtedly one of Helmut Lang's most important periods: His novel aesthetic was starting to receive attention from outside Europe and the press described it as 'minimalist', often in juxtaposition to the visually saturated creations of Ferre and Versace from the late 1980s. Lang's designs represented a new approach to dressing, where luxury was achieved through effortless sophistication and an emphasis on luxurious fabrics and elegant cuts rather than gratuitous ornamentation and oversized logos.
A/W 1993 explored the sober aspects of the clubwear-cum-couture approach that characterised Lang's work from this period. While the silhouettes maintained the sensuality of punk and raver styles (in the form of deconstructed shapes, see-through layers and form-fitting fabrics), the contemporary urgency of Lang's collections was enriched by a new sartorial awareness, characterised by the use of traditionally luxurious finishes, sharp tailoring and natural materials. It was this season that introduced the classic Chesterfield coat, along with the iconic 'slashed' detailing on women's tops.
This directional top is a superb example of the collection's hyper-refined aesthetic: based on a classic T-shirt, the design is radically deconstructed to create a stunning evening piece that is unmistakably Lang. The first thing one notices is the unique double-faced stretch jersey consisting of 81% nylon and 19% elastane. This unique material -featured extensively in Lang's 1992/1993 collections- is densely knit to create a structured fabric with considerable stretch and a smooth satin finish with a saturated shine. The fabric's clean and lustrous surface is printed with a modernist floral pattern that lends a subversively luxurious character to the piece. Since then, similar fabrics have been used by Raf Simons for Jil Sander and Phoebe Philo for Céline.
The second most noticeable feature is the top's form-fitting silhouette, featuring a beautiful narrow shoulderline, a contoured body and extra long two-piece sleeves featuring Lang's iconic 'slashed' construction on the inner elbows. This subtle yet sensual detail has become a hallmark of Helmut Lang womenswear and variations can be seen in several of his collections until the label's demise (pictured: A/W 1996).
A truly avant-garde piece from one of Lang's best collections from the early 1990s, this top offers a beautiful glimpse into the Austrian designer's sophisticated vision for a new kind of womenswear. While being visually striking, it can certainly be appreciated as a collector's item and we are certain that another one is unlikely to ever become available.