If you were asked to imagine an old fashion book with explanations for the reader on how they should dress for each season I would imagine something along the lines of ‘In Autumn, you should always wear browns, oranges and dark mustard. This way you will coordinate beautifully when you take a Sunday stroll in the park..’ Maximilian got his colour palette from these sorts of cliché books. Fixated on this idea of impersonal clothing he chooses to avoid contrasting or bold colours; sticking to a subdued palette that makes all the clothing look like a uniform of the mundane. He then added subtle textile details and unusual pattern cutting to make the pieces come alive with energy through the cut, silhouette and subsequently the wearer.
Sticking to this idea of human error creating flawed beauty he explains, “You have to get up close to my work to see all my man-made errors. I use digital print on silk and treat fabrics to create the illusion of mistakes. By focussing on the body, cut and the way the fabric moves and drapes, I could recreate the natural flaws you see when for example a skirt does not fit across a woman’s hip. It is important to me that you can move in my designs, I want the wearer to feel free, but I also want you to be able to feel the garment on you.” He manages this tricky combination of both freedom and awareness of the garment by creating twists in the pattern pieces so they work against each other creating unnatural tension.
The idea of identity and fashion is an everlasting debate. Everyone wants to be part of a tribe yet they also want to feel like they are distinctly individual in their choices. Two people can have the exact same proportions yet you put them in the same thing and it will give you two completely different energies. Maximilian’s explains to me the importance of identity in this collection: “Everyone has their own language, everyone brings their own life and experiences to a piece. I always have to see a garment on a body, not on a doll. I will put it on one person and hate it, and then on someone else the next day and love it, fashion transforms from person to person.”