You’d think that having a housemate who effuses spiels in Dutch every few seconds (we’re talking ingredient-list-reading, back-of-book-blurb-reading, South-African-national-anthem-singing here…) such is his love for his Uni course, that I’d have had enough of anything remotely Nederlands-related, but given the country’s menswear talent, you’d be so v. wrong.
Sjaak Hullekes (whom I interviewed along with his business partner, Sebastiaan Kramer of Sebastic, a while back), has finally been given the recognition I’ve reckoned he deserved from the moment I came across his luxe yet non-fuss line. Last week Hullekes won the Mercedes-Benz Dutch Fashion Award 2009 (do see the coverage over at Dazed, it’s much more comprehensive, this is more a fan-boy-ish congratulatory note…).
From the ornate, fit-for-aristocracy-and-their-admirers aesthetic that Sjaak advocated when I first happened upon his work to the now more relaxed with quiet eruptions of opulence, the designer’s altered his look somewhat without losing his vision which is, I suppose, partly the reason he won the award. The collection abounded various interpretations of that apparent binary opposition – wearability vs. fashion-forwardness, with sheer shirting and tailored separates in soft Summer tones. Versatility and vibrance, here’s to continued success.
PS. Don’t damn me for superficiality but did mention he’s surely the most dashing up-and-coming menswear designer out there? A ringer for Jon Kortajarena in the Tom Ford eyewear ads, only with the nakedness…