Photograph courtesy of Burberry.

Thanks to Vivienne Westwood, the New Burberry Could Be Very Punk

The brand announced today that new chief creative officer Riccardo Tisci would create a capsule of reworked British heritage classics with the queen of punk fashion.

by Rachel Tashjian
|
Jul 7 2018, 12:05am

Photograph courtesy of Burberry.

Burberry announced something incredibly cool today: Riccardo Tisci will be collaborating on a capsule collection with punk goddess designer extraordinaire Vivienne Westwood, to arrive in stores this December. (In addition to making this announcement, they also made my new computer background, which is the above photo of Westwood’s creative director Andreas Kronthaler, Tisci, and Westwood, nestling together like the three graces.)

This will be Tisci’s first collaboration as Burberry’s new chief creative officer; this past spring, he “curated” the Burberry Resort Collection, which had been designed by the in-house team before his tenure began.

Everyone’s been curious what Tisci’s first big moves at Burberry would be—he’s a resolutely Italian designer with a slick baroque aesthetic that is adored by celebrities, which is a departure for Burberry’s previous vibe. (Much speculation that Tisci’s design debut would come at the royal wedding turned out to be unfounded.) Adding more intrigue to his plans for the brand is the fact that he’s working with a collaborator so early—collaboration is a major tactic in the fashion playbook now, but it also suggests a willingness for creative exploration and play. Westwood is a particularly fantastic choice: while she’s of course a fashion legend, and was an integral part of the 2013 Punk: Chaos to Couture show at the Costume Institute, I’ve wondered over the past few years whether she’s really gotten her due respect from members of my generation for her pioneering shop Sex, which sold magazines and band merch next to up-cycled and reworked garments. And then there’s her passion for t-shirts—all of these predilections echo loudly in the modern “concept shop” and the work of designers like Hood by Air and Vaquera.

In the press release, the brand said that the collaboration would be “a collection of reimagined iconic styles, in celebration of British style and heritage.” But with Westwood, who has a devilish sense of humor, that could mean anything.