Washington Square News

The Blonds x Rootstein Collection 2016

By Victor Leonard, Contributing Writer

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Jennifer Neufeld

The Rootstein Display Mannequin launch party was almost ethereal, transforming the corporate space into a shimmering, reflective showcase of memorable pieces from The Blonds archives. 

Each mannequin, carefully crafted in the image of The Blonds’ own Phillipe Blond, presented an air of personality to an already individualistic collection of clothing. This newest line of mannequins is the first to feature both male and female forms based on the visage of a single person, a groundbreaking step for famed mannequin company Rootstein. The glamorous venue, which took about a year from conception to implementation, was also a collaboration between The Blonds and Rootstein’s own Kevin Arpino.

“Darling you look incredible, as a boy, as a girl,” Arpino said to Phillipe, prompting the idea to showcase Phillipe’s own likeness along with the collection. “We said, ‘How can we make this better?’ so we brought a bunch of our archived pieces together, and we’ve never seen our collection like this before,” says Phillipe, “so it’s become extra special to see.”

Lighting from above was perfectly captured by every jewel encrusted bodice, catsuit, as well as the large silver globes, varying in size and strategically placed throughout the space directing most of the flow. One trench coat stood out, very different from the jewel covered pieces, dubbed “Our Pussycat” by David and Phillipe Blond. It was inspired by a specific Catwoman scene, in Tim Burtons’ “Batman,” where she sported a bright pink fabric detailed with pastel cats. The Blonds version has spray painted detailing and simple black jewels that subtly blend with the color of the paint, giving it a lustful and sultry shimmer.

“There’s so much behind this presentation, it has to do with being genderless, with glamour, self expression and Instagram SELFIES!” Phillipe said in reference to phones being held in the hands of a couple mannequins.

“Phillipe is famous for his Instagram selfies, and we sort of wanted to showcase that, by blowing up some on the walls, and we wanted to make it interactive so people could actually come and take one in the space,” said David.

A combination of beautifully crafted, expressionist clothing and vivid, transparent personality, Rootstein and The Blonds did it again, producing an incredibly interactive presentation to celebrate a truly large step for both.

Victor Leonard is a contributing writer. Email him at [email protected]

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