FF's choices from the A COLD WALL drop
The password for the A Cold Wall drop have been released to a select few of their loyal customers (and anyone who they care to share it with) to buy from their new collection ahead of the general opening of their web store. Fashion Fuckery has the access, and we think that there are several pieces that we would cop that would make great additions to a Fashion Fuckery member's wardrobe, whether they want to make a statement at the up coming London Fashion Week, or a lowkey flex on Instagram.
Seen on the catwalk for their AW18 collection, these wellington boots speak loudly, yet hold a quiet dignity. It's interesting that this may introduce a new silhouette to the shoe game, yet we are all familiar with wellies, more for a dirty day in the countryside than to stunt on city pavements. Yet, their industrial vibe, reminding us of of Samuel Ross' Factory Records influence that he shares with Virgil Abloh, go well with post-industrial fits. Perhaps a less recognised reference also would be the outlandish Raf Simons Bunny Boots, which are also industrial in nature, but are way more difficult to pull off. For £180 the price does not seem so bad in comparison with less complex items with a much higher price tag.
Holster bags are what made A Cold Wall, and they always have an iteration in their collections. They have been popular due to their practicality and familiarity to those who are used to side bags as a part of a streetwear uniform. They are also a pretty easy flex due to their aesthetic which is minimal, and bags in general are easier to flex as they make an outfit without taking it over. The new season's version has two separate compartments with zips. Even though we are not sure of the practicality of the smaller pouches, following how perfect the first version was for portable chargers, but the addition of zips is definitely a welcomed detail, as the previous flap closure was liable to your possessions falling out, as we're sure many have found out with a smashed iphone screen on a messy night out. The slightly more complex construction might warrant the hiked price at £375 but those familiar with pricing in new brands will recognise it as a way to hide price inflation. Still a hard piece that will be very popular.
ACW's bottoms are often based on the street staple of tracksuit bottoms, with last season's offering including reversible jersey versions. This season we're looking at nylon, giving a modern futurist vibe as if they had been supplied by NASA from one of their space missions. It's the colour that FF likes, even though they do come in black, which is pretty new for ACW who have shied away from the colour previously, the charcoal shade gives you a bit of a standout and works well with the shine of the material. The minimal branding gives you that brand recognition which you would probably need for a streetstyle shot, but it leaves us wanting for more subtlety, and recognition coming from signature details or construction. Maybe we're just more part of the school of Margiela than Supreme when it comes to logos and branding, but when the brand announced that they would be separating their offering between a higher level A Cold Wall and a more consumer friendly Polythene, this was the development we were expecting. At £205 we can't complain about the price for what is a designer good, where other brands offer trousers with not much more to them for double the price.
Again referencing industrialism and the Peter Saville aesthetic for Factory, this tshirt will for sure make it's way into the wardrobe of those who support the brand. The particular colour again attractive and goes well with a wide array of other components. The striking lime line across the lower torso adds a level of interest so the print does not get lost, yet the placement means that under a jacket, the tshirt could function as a plain tshirt but still keep it's brand value with the logo positioned at the middle of the chest. £178 seems an ok price for a designer tshirt where fashion houses cash in on their followers with sky high prices these days, however it hits us as strange that a tshirt is only £2 less expensive than boots.
For a brand like A Cold Wall, part of their offering has to cater for those who only want a plain tshirt with minimal branding and detailing, and this black tshirt does this. Most of the design goes into the construction and the material of this tshirt with an oversized cut in a soft cotton. A strip of gaffer tape, a new addition to the language of the brand, lays under the 2 recognisable brand logos, albeit they are at a much smaller scale than regularly seen, offering a certain sophistication. This gaffer tape speaks to the school of design of designing with what you see around you, followed by Heron Preston and Virgil, and no doubt Samuel Ross sees the industrial ubiquitousness of gaffer tape in his studio and on shoots, transforming an every day item for him into a design feature. The irony of the price, £158, for a tshirt with this tape, which is recognised for being available inexpensively is not missed by us and plays into the same game as Demna Gvasalia at Vetements and Balenciaga, charging a premium for what are essentially a combination of every day items, but we get it and we like it. This is fashion after all.
A certain fashion week flex during the rainy spring is this poncho. Ponchos were not seen as a fashion friendly piece, but more something you wore to stay dry at Disney Land, but their simplicity and ability to fit any size makes them perfect for a brand like ACW. The piece has been a success for Comme des Garcons' CDG line, sold in Dover Street Market London's basement. Samuel Ross' version transforms your outfit into an industrial uniform fit for a factory worker, as the cape has the ability to cover the majority of your fit. It's definitely the most cost effective way to buy into the A Cold Wall look, even though the item's price is £235. It's very easy to criticise the price of such items, but it's also easy to forget the hours and expense spent sampling and fine tuning products that go into producing a high fashion brand, to make what essentially will be a limited product.
A Cold Wall's drop fulfilled our needs for new clothes to look at following the torrent of releases during the European men's fashion weeks, and the subsequent following drought. There were several pieces that we would be happy to own, but also as with any brand each item was met with a level of scrutiny. Definitely, we see the brand going far, and we do buy into the British perspective on the youth and industrialism, but yet still the brand leaves us wanting. With rumours of investment in the brand, we hope this will bring more to the table and enable Samuel Ross to fulfil his creativity and show us his talent. We just hope that the desirability of the brand, seen in London during the Nike Af1 collaboration drop, does not drive the business to cashing in on this hype, but from what we've seen so far, they have plenty of integrity left.
The collection can be shopped here.
Words by Iolo Lewis Edwards
All photos A Cold Wall