For an up-and-coming fashion line, grabbing the attention of a modern-day shopper is never easy. Making a lasting name for yourself within the industry is hard enough for many established labels in today’s social media-driven consumer climate, let alone one that is just starting out. Between the constant need for eye-catching imagery for Instagram, working to gain the support from coveted influencers, and negotiating the more traditional buying markets of boutiques and department stores, most start-ups can go bankrupt before even really selling through their first collections. In an effort to relieve designers of this problem, digital-first e-commerce site Net-a-Porter founded their VANGUARD program to help encourage and foster the next wave of fashion talents.
Now into its third season, the website has seen an incredibly positive effect on the lines that have participated within the initiative. Along with comprehensive mentorship within each area of business, the brands will also be supported by a visual campaign created by the company. Unlike prior years, each of the lines were scouted through social media and sustainability was an important component of the selection requirements. But, who are these designers? See below for a complete breakdown of each label.
This South Korean-based brand is helmed by self-taught designer Eunhye Shin. Le 17 Septembre started as a successful blog where Shin was able to parley the line into one of the most interesting voices within the Korean fashion scene. With every item designed and manufactured in South Korea, the pieces themselves consist of a monochromatic palette and minimalist chic silhouettes that offer a quiet contemplative cool aesthetic sure to be a welcome addition to any stylish professional wardrobe.
There has been a bit of a handbag renaissance happening lately, gone are the days of traditionally shaped bags better known for their function rather than aesthetic. Today’s offerings are rivaling the coolest sculptures and are as much of a statement as any piece of ready-to-wear. Enter Barcelona based handbag line, The Sant, with its quirky exaggerated shapes and modern elements the brand manages to encapsulate a fresh new style sure to have every fashion girl clamoring to be seen wearing one of its designs. Crafted in Spain by the hands of artisans with generations of acquired experience the pieces feel luxurious, well-made, and, most of all, unique.
Perhaps one of the hottest topics surrounding the fashion industry, sustainability is an initiative many are striving for. In the past, this charge for a better world has been predominantly championed by many smaller labels, but perhaps none so ardently as BITE studios. BITE an acronym for “By Independent Thinkers for Environmental progress) is proving to be a veteran in the world of sustainability. Founded in 2016 by a collective of creative minds based between Stockholm and London. The brand focuses on uncompromising design and impeccable fit through sustainable manufacturing, as well as all pieces being produced using only the highest quality, ethically sourced materials.
With a namesake, that means ”holiness of nature ” in the Latin the handbag brand, Naturae Sacra is setting itself to high standards. However, this Turkish label manages to do just that, with elegant designs and carefully crafted pieces – no two are exactly the same – their fluid shapes are an homage to nature’s uniqueness with every piece different for the person that carries them. Using fabrications of extravagant leathers and stunning resins each bag is a work of art worthy of the divinity of mother nature.
Click here for more information on the VANGUARD Collection.