Whether it’s tailoring or tracksuits, fine-tuning an outfit is a game measured in millimeters. Handmade embellishments and ethereal details don’t simply denote quality, they leave an imprint of human thought — and often hidden messages — on a garment.
Key details have the power to become internationally recognized micro-signatures over time. Think Maison Margiela and Common Project’s numerical coding system, which signify what category any of its individual products belong to. More recently, there’s Virgil Abloh’s cut-off collars on all shirts at Louis Vuitton, Vetements’ lighter heels, and Matthew Williams’ safety buckle. Others are more subtle, like a spare button fittingly masked as a spare tire on the inside of some Arthur Kar’s L’art de Automobile tees, and the name of the season embroidered inside the crocodile logo on runway polos at Lacoste, courtesy of Creative Director Louise Trotter.
Overall, it’s these details that are often overlooked, yet they’re what differentiate one mundane white T-shirt from any other on the market. The most successful designers understand the impact the most quiet details have on super fans — it’s what attracted many of them to fashion in the first place.
Here, five flourishes that made us double take this season.
Scorpion Belt by Mowalola Remember when The Rock starred in that weirdly successful The Mummy prequel, The Scorpion King? Mowalola does.
Pearl Cuff Buttons by Matthew Adams Dolan A finance bro’s way of saying “I too detest toxic gender norms.”
Hair Charms by Balenciaga Monograms have been everywhere this year, but not in your hair.
Kurt Cobain Care Instructions by Wacko Maria This isn’t the only Nirvana fan art hidden in this magazine.
Asymmetrical Shirt by Loewe Ever mischievous, designer Jonathan Anderson’s take on the white button down quietly sabotages the possibility of ever wearing a tie.
This story appears in the new issue of HIGHStyle, a Magazine by Highsnobiety. Click the link below to order a copy.