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Interview: Viktor&Rolf x Calida

Interview: Viktor&Rolf x Calida

In January 2020, the Swiss lingerie brand, Calida, and the avant-garde luxury label, Viktor&Rolf, presented their joint Capsule Collection, "we want a better world" at NEONYT. Colorful, contemporary, insane details, and above all, 100 percent compostable.

Shimmering yellow, sky blue, signal red – Viktor & Rolf have always been known for colors and unusual patterns. The Dutch design duo has brought their iconic signature to the joint “we want a better world” collection with Swiss lingerie expert, Calida, and has added underwear, pajamas and T-shirts for men and women in 70s inspired allover prints and iconic frill details.

A TRULY GREEN STORY – a 100 percent compostable collection for a better world.

In addition to the spectacular designs, the cooperation is primarily about sustainability and about showing that high fashion and the highest standards of sustainability are not mutually exclusive. The bar has been set very high. “We want a better world” is double certified. Cradle-to-cradle and made in green by Oeko-Tex. What makes the collection so sustainable? The use of compostable, sustainable Tencel and Lyocell.

Inspired by the Haute-Couture – Viktor&Rolf x Calida

Underwear and loungewear are topics that are normally not on the couturiers’ agenda. What lead them to work with the Swiss lingerie expert from Oberkirch and what they learned about sustainability during this collaboration is revealed in an interview.

Viktor&Rolf
Viktor&Rolf

„We want a better world” is the first 100% biodegradable designer capsule collection.

GREENSTYLE: Viktor & Rolf is the epitome of haute couture. You don’t immediately think of underwear and pajamas. What attracted you to the cooperation with Calida?
Viktor&Rolf: We wanted to create a product that appeals to a wider audience. Underwear and pajamas are a comfortable necessity with a great sense of fashion. We were very pleased to work with a sustainable brand to create soft, comfortable and wearable garments.

Underwear and pajamas are a comfortable necessity with a great sense of fashion.

GREENSTYLE: “We want a better world” is not your first sustainable collaboration. You also cooperated with Zalando. The RE:CYCLE collection at that time was made from unsold garments of the last seasons. This time you are relying on cradle-to-cradle. What appeals to you when it comes to the various facets of sustainability?
Viktor&Rolf: The creativity that comes with conscious design. Finding new ways to be sustainable and at the same time producing an artistic approach and a high-quality product.

GREENSTYLE: Has this collaboration and the resulting insights changed your view on sustainability?
Viktor&Rolf: The creativity that comes with conscious design. Finding new ways to be sustainable while maintaining an artistic approach and a high quality product.
Viktor&Rolf: Yes, we have learned that more and more is possible. Calida is very innovative when it comes to sustainability. We are delighted to be part of the first 100% compostable collection with this unique cradle-to-cradle approach.

Viktor&Rolf
Viktor&Rolf

We have learned that more and more is possible.

GREENSTYLE: What impact will these cooperations have on future Viktor&Rolf collections?
Viktor&Rolf: Conscious design is an important facet for us as designers and as a fashion brand. We will continue to incorporate various mindful and conscious approaches in our work.

GREENSTYLE: Giorgio Armani has just written a brand letter calling for a deceleration of high fashion in order to reduce overproduction, among other things. What do you advise our readers to do?
Viktor&Rolf: Be careful and friendly.

GREENSTYLE: What is your vision of sustainable couture?
Viktor&Rolf: For us, couture is our experimental laboratory. In the past, we used vintage archive pieces as a basis for new creations. We have shown this in our Vagabonds collection 2016 and the Action Dolls collection.

 

Viktor&Rolf
Viktor&Rolf

For us, couture is our experimental laboratory.

For our collection “Boulevard of Broken Dreams” in 2017 we used – often damaged – vintage cocktail and evening wear from different decades. We put these fragments together with gold, inspired by Kintsugi, a principle of Japanese ceramics in which true beauty comes from imperfection. For “Spiritual Glamour” we used hand felted fabrics dyed with natural ingredients in collaboration with Claudy Jongstra. After we had almost exhausted our stock at our previous upcycling couture shows, we turned to our archive of fabric samples for our latest “Patchworks” collection.

GREENSTYLE: Are there any further plans for sustainable cooperation?
Viktor&Rolf: Stay tuned…

Good to know:
In 2016, CALIDA was the first lingerie label in the world to introduce the independent label MADE IN GREEN by Oeko-Tex®, which is awarded according to the strictest social and ecological criteria and is committed to transparency. This was followed in 2018 by the launch of the first 100% compostable T-shirt in the 100% NATURE series. The “we want a better world” Capsule Collection has been available in stores since May 2020 and a second edition will be available in October.