For a brand with a strong and clear identity, Chris Leba manages to inject newfound excitement into R13 each season. Sure, there was trademark suiting, plaids, army influences and boxy proportions filtered through the brand’s rebellious grunge lens, but it was accented here with special design quirks that felt fresh.
Leba shied away from the print-heavy direction he’s been going the past few seasons, instead focusing on subverting khaki, plaids and more workwear-leaning fabrications. He updated khaki outerwear and pants with turn-back cuffs to reveal his signature leopard print, and offered a lot of cool urban jumpsuits cut big and cinched with double belts.
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Many outerwear pieces were versatile with internal contrast drawstrings to cinch the waist in back yet leave the front unaffected; a light gray double-breasted coat was a notable standout for retaining a boxy, disaffected appeal. Patchwork camo jackets in various lengths were topped off with giant utility pockets and touted the gender-ambiguous realm Leba likes to play in.
The takeaway from each R13 collection is that Leba has fun. He puts out delicate floral slipdresses with youthful energy, cool torn-up sweaters and utilizes leopard print as if it were a neutral fabric — all while maintaining the brand’s rock-‘n’-roll core. “When you look at the history of rock and roll, the girls are somehow always wearing leopard. There’s an authentic history to it,” he concluded.
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Launch Gallery: R13 Pre-Fall 2020