Also showing Day 2 of New York Fashion Week Men’s was Linder. Linder is a ready- to-wear brand launched in New York City in 2013 reflecting the aesthetic of Co-Creative Directors and Designers, Sam Linder and Kirk Millar.
For Spring Summer 2019, Linder continues the story of the previous collection, which dealt with acceptance of one’s self, coming out, and revealing the inner life of a gay man–after shedding the exterior shell of imposed masculinity. After this step the door opens to fantasies, hopes and questions about legacy, future, love, companionship, and resiliency.
The designer’s lineage goes back to a Dutch immigrant who in the 1800s migrated through Germany to start life in America. In the collection there is a modern take on Dutch clogs, and sweaters with intarsia replicating drawings of his great great grandmother’s children that she kept in scrapbooks. Each one’s sleeve had florals she cut from a garden magazine in the 1960s. This symbolizes how all of us contribute to a legacy throughout our lives.
In reference to the natural progression of embracing one’s sexuality and finding companionship (an embroidered tee with the word “boyfriend” is a key piece in the collection), love letters asking for him to “wait for me”, signed off with the letters XOXO, adorn a series of jewelry. A modern guayabera wedding shirt, traditionally worn in countries such as Cuba, the Dominican Republic, Mexico, and Puerto Rico, points to companionship, as does an orange transferware china pattern splashed on jeans, jacket, and tees — a symbolic choice partners make when marrying. The track and field jerseys and medals reference the call to jump over hurdles throughout one’s life and to be able to run a long distance race and relay race, giving and receiving help through our true friendships (another tee has the words “best friend”). The sandals with cut-out leaves represent the seasonal cycle of growth and death that one experiences as you challenge yourself to push to a higher plane.
Linder collaborated with Parisian luxury brand, Chapal. According to Linder, “The collaboration was a natural fit for the season. Their craftsmanship and knowledge of leather goods is unparalleled, and their history rooted in outfitting race car drivers tied perfectly into the collection. The bags, shoes, gloves and leather jackets integrate with the rest of the pieces to create a beautiful texture and a bridge between a long-standing French brand and a new American fashion label.”