The Uniqlo x JW Anderson Summer Collection Will Make You Feel Good Again
“Creatively it has been frustrating to not be out in the world but I have found inspiration in art and online and in everyday life,” says JW Anderson about working within the constraints of the global pandemic. Nevertheless, the fashion designer, known for his whimsical creations in his eponymous label and the luxury brand Loewe, was able to channel the unusual experience into something joyful.
Dropping on April 23, the Uniqlo and JW Anderson summer 2021 collection centers on what everyone needs right now: comfort. At the start of the pandemic, the creative spent a lot of time in his London garden, and this key memory led to the themes of renewal and nature. “I wanted the overall mood to feel calming and connected to this idea of spring and optimism,” he says of the set.
To achieve this, he employs two things. The colors are natural—the blues of the sky, the dark greens and caramels of leaves and twigs, the off whites of a lazy afternoon. For the designer, the washed-out appearance, a subdued feeling, recalls the Earth and elicits a feeling of lightness.
Embroidery (the wildflowers on a T-shirt, for example) furthers the idea of comfort, too, as something done by hand evokes the home. “The blanket stitching gives this feeling like the clothing was made generations ago by your relatives and the embroidery feels like needlepoint that, maybe, your grandmother did. It feels authentic and grounded,” says Anderson, who also points out how people turned to handicrafts during the lockdown, and these little details reflect that.
As for the styles, which include 13 pieces for men, Anderson and Uniqlo make it a point that the clothes are an uncomplicated—“a calm, grounded, comfortable wardrobe,” as the designer describes. That means the boxy pocket tees you love, bucket hats, chambray work shirts, and even socks (for your sandals). “I really like the T-shirts with the blanket stitching. There is a standardness to them that makes them quite versatile, which is key for me,” he adds.
When asked how he wants you to feel in these fresh threads, Anderson says he just wants you to feel good: “To feel confident in them no matter how they choose to wear them, no matter what their gender expression or identity. Comfortable and happy and confident.” Amen to that.