For Spring Summer 2023, Ancuta Sarca returned to the London schedule with a collection that pushes her design signatures forward. This season, the Romanian designer, Fashion East alumni, and 2022 Andam Fashion Awards finalist continues bridging gender ideologies with her instantly recognizable footwear and upcycled accessories.
From looking at seminal films such as Ex Machina and The Skin I Live In, inspiration is taken from the world’s obsession with AI technologies and their ability to create exact replicas. The designer also pays homage to her hometown of Negrești-Oaș, taking into account its picturesque surroundings of woodlands, forests, and snow-covered hills. As a result, the collection harmonizes two opposed extremes of the spectrum, demonstrating that technology wouldn’t be without the organic.
The designs celebrate the splendor of nature while offering the brand’s key styles through a retro-futuristic lens, whether it be with the use of vintage quilted nylon jackets on boots that were designed to withstand alpine temperatures or pointed-toe heels adorned with end-of-roll faux furs. Additionally, there are square-toe loafers and booties made of deadstock leathers and sports mesh that carry over the previous seasons’ design language.
For the first time this season, denim has been applied to backless pumps and clogs from repurposed denim jackets. To complement the new assortment of pieces, the designer introduces a new creative partnership with Lee® to deliver two form-fitting looks out of deadstock denim, which includes bralettes, detachable sleeves, and a deadstock faux shearling trim.
The presentation’s set-up in the Old Selfridges Hotel location, which incorporates the use of sustainably sourced wooden logs encased in metal beams, is an illustration of how nature and technology can coexist harmoniously. Staying true to the core themes of the collection, models are grouped together in complementary styles, as if they were clones.
Styling: Anders S0lvsten Thomsen at Lalaland Artists
Photography: Polina Boyko
Make-up Artist: Bea Sweet at CLM
Hair Stylist: Kota Suizu at CLM
Nails: Anh Hoang
Set Design: Paulina Piipponen
Casting: Lisa Dymph Megens
Words: Alex Kessler
PR: Purple PR
Choreography: Matt Barksby at Sourced London
Music direction: Maxine Pennington
With special thanks to NEWGEN panel, Lee®️, British Fashion Council, my studio team, and factory teams.