Could Rick Owens’ Spring 2012 collection inspire the future of the kandura?
The Western world is probably wondering, what self-respecting man would wear Rick Owens’ Spring/Summer 2012 menswear collection? And it’s a legitimate, completely understandable socio-scientific inquiry.
Because really, why would any guy want to wear ankle-length skirts and tunics, right?
Right now, they see it as some kind of anti-establishment, I’m-such-an-artiste-I’m-gonna-make-men-wear-dresses artistic expression that society needs to thrive and remain a well-oiled change-churning machine.
It’s something that’s considered pretty and high-brow and amazing, but utterly useless in its lack of any conceivable form of real-world application.
But over here, we want to see it as something that can further fuel evolution that the kandura is currently undergoing. We have regional designers such as Hatem Alakeel who’ve been hard at work, changing the way the traditional Arab dress is perceived. What if this could be the next step in transforming this iconic white gown into an artifact of style, rather than just of heritage?
Then it would no longer just be a traditional garment that would stay stagnant – design-wise – and, well, traditional. It would be seen as just one piece of a bigger fashion puzzle, just a single element of a more complicated sartorial equation – that which greets you good morning (and good luck, albeit in a mean, sarcastic tone) every single day as you open your closet and try to figure out what to wear.
“Am I going to wear a kandura today? Of course, but surely not as a lone garment without anything else to pull a complete look together? How about a jacket? Should I belt it? How do I accessorize?” Hopefully, in the future, these would become the mundane post-shower musings of an average man, evolving from the mindless routine of pulling out one among a long rack of identical white kanduras and getting into uniform.
Photos courtesy of Style.com