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050: Adult dinner party conversation
Plus SSENSE down to 70% off, Balenciaga's in-house sale, and an $11,250 Tekla collab.
I realize a shopping newsletter might feel trite in this moment, but I’m hoping the predictably uneditorialized pages of retail sites can offer a mental recess between the crises we’ve already been met with and those still on their way. How we’re spending money on the internet from here out might look a bit different. To buy abortion pills online, here’s a good resource. And if you want to donate money to abortion funds, I found this guide helpful.
As a small acknowledgement of this newsletter’s 50th issue (and its one-year anniversary, which I let slide on June 10th), I’ve been thinking about the ways it’s changed—built character through character limits, but also hopefully made some attempted coup away from the kids’ table and into more adult dinner-party conversation. (Shop talk is true of the dinner parties I go to, but then again I am the common denominator.)
In the last 12 months, I’ve spoken to 75 excellent shoppers and all-around tasteful, keen-eyed people who’ve contributed their insights and actual purchases. In the spirit of shopping out loud, I’ve also shared countless (in that I don’t feel like counting) purchases I’ve made myself. Even in the time since I last corralled my gets in an intro recap, those acquisitions have amounted to basically an entirely new wardrobe.
I’ve made several returns to the SSENSE sale buffet for seconds and thirds, coming back with Wales Bonner x Adidas sweatpants, a Miaou mini skirt, a paper-thin Aeron summer knit dress, and an A, Roege Hove tank that spurred a conversation with Brooklyn Gallagher about how the brand’s commitment to a proprietary textile could make it the next Pleats Please. I’ve picked up a set of eight Hana Karim lunch plates, some New Balance 530s, and a pair of Bode pants for Nir (slash moi).
Adventures in eBay have landed me a new and invaluable pair of Pleats Please trousers (with a button fly! Truly hilarious!) and basketball shorts—concurrent wears by Liana Satenstein and Grace Dougherty are all the proof I need that 2022 is to basketball shorts as 2021 was to boxers.
And many more things to step in and carry: neotenic Kkerele shoes, ‘90s-coded Dubie wedges, a Sunnei bag for sprinting towards trains, and a nativity scene’s worth of Gemsun gems—crocheted bags, paper hats, corsage belts that I don’t know how I lived without.
The designer x athletic company schtick is on the verge of being played out beyond return (which doesn’t mean it won’t speed past that point anyway), but for now, the team that’s garnering the most organic interest comes from Jacquemus x Nike (not Gucci x Adidas, sorry). From the glimpses we’ve been allowed thus far, it’s not hard to grasp that this collection really is primed for ubiquity (as opposed to insidery buzz as with Wales Bonner—though the Mowalola x New Balance partnership teased this week in Paris might just be coming for her gig).
John Pawson designs as though he’s stepping into your body, acutely sensitive to the physical feelings objects possess, the emotional ones they ignite, and how those things will triangulate inside the experiencing being. For his third collection in partnership with Tekla, inspired by his Home Farm project, he brings this wavelength to a limited run of cotton bedding manipulated to feel like linen, plus an oiled elm bed frame. The platform bed, with its lawnchair-like adjustable headrest and deceptively humble low frame, is an understated luxury worth aspiring to, never once apologizing for its $11,250+ price tag, available for custom order via email.
Manolo Blahnik and Birkenstock reunited for a second collection, though it wasn’t as devilishly self-aware as the first (plus the clear and polka-dotted styles are both sold out by now). It’s probably a good thing Dior stepped in with its own “x” alongside the granola-hailing clog co. The latter features nubuck and felted uppers, Alyx-like buckles, and a longer shelf life for overall wearability.
Attersee, the luxury resortwear brand launched by former T Magazine director Isabel Wilkinson Schor, introduces shoes in partnership with Italian, family-run Drogheria Crivellini, in celebration of the former’s first birthday. The pared-back furlane flats come in a Mary Jane style and a simple slipper, available in several shades of Attersee’s signature herringbone stripe, setting the styles apart from past collaborations Crivellini has joined with Alex Mill and Clare V.
There’s also: If you somehow missed the news of SKKN BY KIM launching, well that happened; aside from its John Pawson release, Tekla has also re-united with previous collaborator Stussy on a new collection; Parade goes genderless with 10 new underwear styles; jeweler Pamela Love ventures for the first time into apparel alongside Rent the Runway, available to rent or buy; meanwhile, her friend and contemporary Rosie Assoulin teams up with Allbirds on some sugar-headache-shade pool slides; bougie anti-aging skincare Vintner’s Daughter launches its first fragrance; RE/DONE links with Ford on a car-themed collection, of course starring Devon Lee Carlson; Outdoor Voices expands its line of exercise dresses; Dilara Findikoglu swim 2022 is at long last here; Candice Swanepoel’s swimwear brand Tropic of C has Irish-twin collabs with activewear labels, Alo and Splits59; in even further swim news, Kim Shui releases an exclusive beachwear collection on SSENSE; wait, one more—Ciao Lucia and Anemos co-create a line of Halle Berry-esque swim; baby bags for edgy girls brand Medea launches a floating device-like satchel in support of Mediterranea Saving Humans; Away delves into baggage for outdoor travel, F.A.R.; and Christopher John Rogers’ Collection 010 is available, after two long years, for pre-order.
What’s on sale
In an unlikely move for a luxury brand, Balenciaga is hosting a summer sale on its own site, featuring bags, shoes, clothes, and accessories for up to 40% off. It gives unedited access to Balenciaga’s meandering collections of interwoven influences in harmony, as they were meant to be experienced, rather than lice-combed for potential best-sellers by mega multi-brand retailers.
The SSENSE sale, as predicted, is up to 70% off as of this week. Discounts are not increasing in a uniform fashion, so among the best and highest discounted items as of late include Alyx chain-adorned apparel, the newest LVMH prize-winner Nicolas Daley, sheer Saint Sintra skirts for under $80, seductively threadbare Gabe Gordon knits, many Dion Lee corset tops, an exquisite Paco Rabanne disc skirt for 70% off, and plenty of Bode on Private Sale (like the last-pair pants I just bought for Nir).
Browns has fewer sales than any other shop I frequent. With the same parent company as Farfetch, a perma-sale cenote of untold depths, most off-price items are simply redirected to save face for the affluent-serving, tweezer-curated platform. Right now, however, Browns shoppers are enjoying one of those exceedingly rare moments when the retailer’s buy has been brought down in price by up to 60%. I just bought a Christopher Esber dress for an upcoming occasion, but there’s plenty of other items I’m impressed to see: the Form + Fold bikinis I’ve been sermonizing on IG, “good” Jacquemus, Still Here jeans, and generally just a whole sale section that’s fun to click through.
Concurrently, Christopher Esber is throwing his own party on Resort ‘22 pieces, dropping them down 20%. As with Balenciaga, the options here are sweeping, with many styles and colors not only on sale but exclusive to the Christopher Esber site.
A cornerstone of the talismanic jewelry movement that’s percolating in Lower Manhattan and certain pockets of Instagram, Santangelo is having a rare and not-insignificant sale. Energetically weighty beaded necklaces, earrings, anklets, even blankets and plates, are hundreds off.
H.Lorenzo, the LA-based store that’s cult-celebrated by fashion weirdos, is having a sale that’s not just a space for capitalizing on well-loved designers for less, but a portal to expanding, or at the very least reframing, one’s own database of fashion and even taste.
By Far, though among the most discounted pieces at SSENSE, is also clearing out stock with an in-house sale up to 60% off. Even if you think you know all of By Far’s styles (like I did), you’ll be surprised by the breadth of silhouettes offered (like I was), and be tempted to fold some of the lesser-known shoes and bags into your own closet (like I am, currently).
There’s also: Mansur Gavriel’s summer sale goes to 40% off on shoes and bags, plus take an additional 15% off with EXTRA15; Ratio et Motus is having a sale more generous that one would expect of such a boutique luxury brand—60% off; somewhat British-somewhat Danish brand Brogger is hosting a 40% off archive sale with JUNE40; Mugler-adjacent David Koma’s end of season sale goes up to 40% off; we don’t deserve Uniqlo, even less so when there’s a summer sale offering its simply sophisticated basics at inconceivably low prices; it’s sale season in Sunnei’s world, which means oddball Italian design with a fantastic sense of humor, up to 40% off; Cosabella undies, bras, and sleep things are up to 60% off; French brand Soeur’s summer sale has its expressive wardrobe building blocks for up to 40% off; another popular Frenchie, Musier Paris’ “Soldes” section is similarly down 40%; Vasquiat, the pre-sale platform from Barcelona championing young brands, is adding onto its already-up-to-50%-off sale an extra 15% discount with EXTRA15; the brand behind fashion’s whimsical strawberry wave, Helmstedt, is on summer sale; Richer Poorer’s Summer Warehouse Sale is an overseeping oil field of great-fitting boxy tees and lounging briefs, and it’s up to 70% off; and you’re going to love Eyty’s summer sale, which is full of funny little sneakers and vests of all kinds.
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