Amiri Spring 2021 Fashion Show Review

Review of Amiri

Spring 2021 Fashion Show


Review of Amiri Spring 2021 Fashion Show

Sleek But Lacking Authenticity

By Long Nguyen

Launched in 2013, Mike Amiri built his fashion business by hitting a stride with a niche consumer group with products that married his personal experiences growing up in Southern California with deep exposure to the local skate, surf, street, grunge, punk, rock’n’roll subculture with his intensive devotion to savoir faire craftsmanship and special attention to carefully sourced materials to create a staples of menswear with casual merchandises ranging from printed shirts, premium denim with meticulous deconstruction, illustrated denim jacket, patchwork flannel shirts, graphic premium tee-shirts. 

Nostalgia and refined craftmanship are a perfect pairing in fashion. 

Specifically for Amiri, this combination has turned into his once DIY looks and methodologies into highly recognizable signatures of distressed denims made with strategic ripping and fringing, with shredding and with what the designer himself call gun shot holes that sell for up to 2k a pair. This has allowed the brand to expand its product categories over the years to more selections of premium cotton tee-shirts, fitted slub biker jeans, tailored nylon bombers, specialized leathers and even shearling jackets. 

The fall show in Paris in late January 2020 was the culmination of this growth trajectory where the designer sent on the runway at the Palais de Chaillot plenty of bouclé suits, cashmere coats, and trenches and a bit less of the distress stuff that anchored the brand’s aesthetics – in short the Fall 2020 show had all the bench marks of a regular collection showing in the French capital to compete with other luxury brands. Six months prior in June 2019, OTB Group announced the purchase of a minority interest in Amiri’s company

Amiri opted for an inspirational video this past July as his presentation during the Paris digital fashion week to remind the audience of his deep connections to the LA scene and how he used his knowledge of craft to create a business with a whole lot of celebrity following especially the huge crop of NBA players all wearing his torn jeans on their cement runways entering and leaving the games. Over the summer, a new Rodeo Drive megastore was supposed to open but was postponed due to lockdown and was just opened towards the end of September joining the retail rank of the giants of luxury brand present on this Beverly Hills street. 

Amiri Spring 2021 Fashion Show Review

Everything was present in this slick taped spring show that took place outdoor on a sunny southern California day at the John Lautner’s Sheats-Goldstein Residence in Beverly Hills. The sunshine, the selection of models to represent the new dawn, the lush green garden and the vast expanse view of downtown LA and adjacent neighborhood – every accouterments were present in the portrait of a ‘message of comfort inspired by an attitude of wellness and ease that is quintessentially Californian.’

Everything was present in this slick taped spring show that took place outdoor on a sunny southern California day at the John Lautner’s Sheats-Goldstein Residence in Beverly Hills. The sunshine, the selection of models to represent the new dawn, the lush green garden and the vast expanse view of downtown LA and adjacent neighborhood – every accouterments were present in the portrait of a ‘message of comfort inspired by an attitude of wellness and ease that is quintessentially Californian.’

Even the legendary LA music producer, The Alchemist, performed a set of original mix made especially for the occasion. 

Amiri Spring 2021 Fashion Show Review

The perfect location made the clothes more so at home in a normal way. In the show, all the possible combinations of Amiri merchandises and clothes were also present with the allure of sports and tailoring mixed together in a blue cashmere coat and a blue bandana basketball shorts or a white double breast jacket with ecru cardigan and silk board shorts. In fact the drawstring basketball shorts in tan leather, brown cotton bandana, or in a tan leaf green print was the base layer for breaking the rigidity of the fine tailoring of the jackets and coats.  

The group of models wore the white, black and brown sunglasses, the variety of high tops and low tops sneakers, the decorated weekend leather bag, the black denim jumpsuit with front embroidered logo, the silver necklaces, the guitar shape bag, the leather basketball short suit, the white bucket hat, the black leather ball chain bag, the print shirt-short suit, the white biker leather jacket, the ecru tailored double breast, and even a tailored short camel cashmere coat, the tweedy jacket shorts suit, the baseball duo tone blouson, the silk white floral shorts, or the matching print shirt-short twin set as they walked casually around the sumptuous two level house.

This was a perfect show of merchandise but not so much of ideas. 

Amiri Spring 2021 Fashion Show Review

It felt more like another showing of expensive clothes and accessories destined for the newly opened Rodeo Drive mansion store than designs with a personal message. Sure the current lifestyle and outlook have probably changed and altered in ways beyond anyone’s control. Sure fashion designers have to respond to the changes around them with changes in their aesthetics and in the vocabulary of the clothes. That said, the current crisis by no means meant a total surrender of one’s ethos. The strongest shows this spring seasons came from designers advancing their work rather than retreating into comfort zones as demonstrated forcefully by Rick Owens and Francesco Risso at Marni.  

What was amiss in this slick show was the heartbeat.