When Jasmin Larian (Founder and Creative Director of Cult Gaia) decided to design a collection as an homage to mold-breaking, multifarious women, she immediately landed on wabi-sabi design as the vehicle. Rooted in a profound appreciation of natural simplicity, the ancient Japanese aesthetic is known for boasting earthy tones, perfectly-imperfect shapes and clean, minimalist details. Inspired by these visual elements, Cult Gaia’s Fall 2020 collection reconciles today's women with the traditional aesthetic — all while staying true to its "cult"-loved, architectural silhouettes.
Released on Aug. 14, the robust collection offers something for everyone, whether you favor practical, no-frills jumpsuits or extraverted frocks. There's the ostrich feather-plumed Karis pant, which can be styled with any workwear top, or the brand's matching Simone tank. For something a bit more extravagant, the brand's satin Florence gown taps the asymmetry trend that's essential to wabi-sabi design. Fans of Cult Gaia's Serita dress (including Romee Strijd, Hailey Baldwin, and countless others) will relish the drop's plushy knit styles. Take, for example, the Piper pant set, which offers a leisurely, resort-wear feel that can be worn all fall long.
It's with good reason that the drop boasts such a varied range of silhouettes. In order to sufficiently dress the modern, multitudinous woman, options — and a lot of them — are essential. "My role as a woman changes every hour and in every setting," Larian of Cult Gaia tells TZR. "Being a woman embodies the complex. It often feels like the world is constantly wanting to water down complexities to be more understandable, and everything is becoming an archetype and cliche. I designed this collection to dispel that."
Amidst a pandemic, where women's realities are shifting day by day, designing clothes for them requires an extra layer of discernment, according to Larian. "In some ways, it provokes creativity and focus — it’s paring down everything to what is essential to us while still pushing the creative boundaries of development," says Larian. "I am learning to design more pieces that feel more effortless and you don’t need to think so much about. Still artful, but different in ways.
Artful, indeed — every clutch, shoe, and skirt is steeped in luscious creams, browns and gingers. These warm tones are all consistent with Cult Gaia's always-soothing color choices, while also satisfying the wabi-sabi appreciation of natural shades. Of course, as is borrowed from the brand's signature bag, circular "Ark" shapes still reign supreme — with hairpins, handbags, and all other accessories translating its curvature in new ways.
To browse selects that are available for pre-order now, continue ahead:
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