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2002 Oversized Bondage Shirt with Buttoned Sides

Raf Simons

2002 Oversized Bondage Shirt with Buttoned Sides

£310.00

Size 48 (oversized): Best for any size between an IT 46 - 36 Chest - S and an IT 54 - 44 Chest - L/XL.

Raf Simons strapped shirt from A/W 2002-2003 'Virginia Creeper (Parthenocissus Quinquefolia)'. In excellent used condition. Made in Belgium.

'Virginia Creeper' is remembered as one of Simons's most eclectic and aesthetically subversive collections to this date. Bringing together a diverse variety of Americana-related inspirations, Simons adapted his unique subculture-inspired aesthetic to create the sartorial equivalent of a no man's land in the American South, where everything -from alligators and poisonous plants to murderous maniacs- can kill you. The notes of Antwerp's MoMu Fashion Museum explain:

'The starting point of this collection is the duality of nature. Both soothing and cruel, nature is still not totally conquered by mankind. At the same time the forceful beauty of nature continues to be a fascination, for previous as much as today's generation. [...] Vast and impenetrable woods still put fear into mere mortals. Uncharted swamps serve no real purpose but remain the staple of ominous tales and whispered stories. Poisonous weeds (like the Canadian Virginia Creeper of the collection's title) are a wonderful sight to the eye of the beholder while at the same time cannot be touched or eaten. All said subjects, predators, plants and caprices of nature alike, are isolated, almost separated from modern civilisation. They compose both themes and background of our darker fantasies. It is not surprising, that they keep cropping up in horror movies (e.g. The Blair Witch Project, The Swamp Thing) as well as thriller books. No wonder their splendid, self-contained isolation alludes to a higher, and more pure state of mind.'

The clothes were rich in narrative and style:

'The colours used in the collection are all derived from nature-related themes: forest browns and nightly blacks, slate greys, leafy greens and snowy off-whites. Just like owl feathers or the shades over swamps keep blending into each other, the silhouettes also have changing hues and colour tones, similar to the notion of camouflage. Coats are heavy and loose - almost dripping off the body. Sleeveless padded jackets, hooded, parka-like coats and adventure-style jacquard sweaters are worn on top of each other, to create a 'explorer-of-nature' feel. [...] Also referring to the swamp scenery is a surprising bondage theme. Surprising as the bondage look is not used to restrict or confine the body. Instead, thick harnesses of ribbons are 'draped' over voluminous coats and baggy trousers similar to an imaginary safety net.'  

This shirt encapsulates the collection's rugged, multi-layered statement. Straps draped loosely across the body lend an aggressive edge to the piece, while long tabs on the sleeves' interior allow them to be nonchalantly pulled up. Both sides of the body feature button closures that add further interest to the piece when in motion. The cut is dramatic and exaggerated with an oversized body, dropped shoulders and elongated sleeves. The cotton shirting fabric has been overdyed for a vintage finish with pronounced irregularities. Variations of this design have been re-issued in following seasons, including the iconic S/S 03 'Consumed' collection, A/W 03 'Closer' and A/W 05 'History of my World' (pictured). 

The shirt's finishing is quintessential Simons, featuring many of the designer's signature details. The collar is small and chunky, while the back features side pleats. The hem is curved and slightly shorter on the front. The cuffs have a strong curvilinear shape, while the short cuff openings have sharp rectangular edges. All buttons are realised in genuine mother of pearl.

This rare shirt is a great example of Raf Simons's highly venerated subculture-inspired work. Its directional styling and oversized cut will add a bold avant-garde touch to any contemporary wardrobe.


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