Fear of God's Eternal Collection Is Here. Jerry Lorenzo Breaks It Down.
Jerry Lorenzo isn't big on playing to external expectations. That's been the case since the 44-year-old designer founded Fear of God nearly a decade ago with no formal fashion training but a preternatural knack for creating the kind of stuff that cool kids, celebrities, fashion fans—the list goes on—vibe with on an elemental level.
He was one of the first, along with his longtime friend, the late Virgil Abloh, to recognize the artificial boxing-in of "streetwear" as a category of clothing—which is why he's now one of the biggest names to break out of that box and plant himself firmly in the fashion firmament. At a time when no small chunk of the industry was mourning the death of the suit, he went ahead and teamed up with the crew at Zegna to make it feel entirely vital again. And, notably, he doesn't release his collections on the traditional calendar—which is why we, the clothes-wearing public, have been waiting nearly two years for a new mainline collection from Fear of God.
Well, the wait is over. Fear of God just released its newest collection, a follow-up to the much-lauded—and deservedly so—Seventh Collection that saw Lorenzo and the FOG team incorporate perfectly relaxed tailoring as a fully realized complement to more casual elements like sweats and denim that have been hallmarks of the brand for years. But, in another break with convention, this latest collection is not dubbed the Eighth. Instead, it's the Eternal Collection, an expansive smorgasbord of even-more-generously-cut jackets, trousers, coats, suits, and more, all rendered in a palette of beige, bone, and black—with some washed-out indigo, gray, and olive thrown in for good measure.
I caught up with Lorenzo to ask him why Eternal is arriving now, how it both shifts and continues the legacy of the Seventh Collection, and what modern American luxury means to him.
Esquire: It’s been nearly two years since the last mainline collection released. Why did you decide to release the Eternal Collection now?
Jerry Lorenzo: There is never an importance around timing for us as a brand. The importance is always around getting the product right. With the world shut down for the past two years, I think like most people we had a difficult time designing and developing during this period. For us, in designing something timeless we felt like this could come out ten years from now, it could have come out a year ago, or it could come have come out ten years ago. Timing for us is when the story is ready and when the collection is ready. It is getting released now because we feel as if it is ready to be seen and the story is ready to be heard.
Esquire: You mention in the press release how the collection evolved a bit from conception to execution, leading to calling it the Eternal Collection. I’m curious how you feel it differs from the Seventh Collection? What’s shifted or evolved in your perspective with this new offering? And just as important, what’s stayed the same?
JL: I think what stays the same is the spirit, intention, and point of view of the house. We are always designing and creating within the realm of functionality, sophistication, and effortlessness. For me, when it comes to this collection and it not being called "Eighth," just as much as I don't like to be confined to seasons or the world's expectation or perception of what's coming next, I felt this collection in and of itself was beyond a season, was beyond a number. I thought "Eternal" spoke more to what we're proposing versus the "Eighth Collection."
Esquire: How do you define modern American luxury? What makes it distinct from other global perspectives? And how does this play out in the Eternal Collection specifically and with Fear of God more generally?
JL: I think if you look at the collection, visually you can understand the definition. I think luxury is the ability to be yourself no matter what room you're entering. If it's a formal room and you want to put on a suit, if it's a more relaxed room and you want to wear sweats, we wanted to create a collection that allows the individual to maintain who he is. As he changes from something very casual to something more formal, the emotion, the proportion, and the feel stays the same.
Esquire: And finally, are there any standout pieces from the collection that you feel capture the perspective most effectively? Put another way: what are the first things you’d hope a customer, whether new or returning, will reach for when shopping the new collection?
JL: In all honesty we continue to strip back. The collection was a lot denser than it is right now; I think we're at a place where it is stripped back as far as it can be, so I don't feel as if one piece is more necessary than the other. Each piece is equally as versatile as the next. That story and emotion is felt through the fabrication, construction, and design elements, so we designed within the guardrails of, "Is this a piece that you want to hold on to for a long time or eternally?"
From: Esquire US