copyright © josh milton 2017
I very clearly remember the first time I met Nik Thakkar. I caught his eye, timidly gazing at him from across the room, then skipped on over. Pulling me in for a raspy hug, his smile flecked with alcohol, his body bopping up and down; "I'm in such a good mood!" he shouted.
He was drunk. His chill was probably sold off to pay for the leather jackets. A black vest. A simple choice. A complex collection. Half of the night had been spent chatting to people - even a brief conversation with a woman who later turned out to be Ada Zandition's mother - whilst a division of brooding models with polished skin posed in the background, boots denting the black ashes, littered with leathery rose petals.
"It's great to see you here, man! I'm so happy you made it!" he said to me. Nik scurried off, combing his hand through his metallic mane, and honestly just looked so happy to be where he was today. And he had every reason to be. At the presentation of the Ada + Nik SS16 collection, there was certainly a lot to be celebrating about.
Intimidation hazily lit the room. I felt small amongst the industry professionals, raucous laughter littered around as I smuggled 4 bottles of the Blk water into my satchel. The 60 piece collection was churned in and out on the conveyor belt of monolithic models. Whilst quietly planning me and one of the model's weddings (I mean, his jawline doe) I snapped away at the bleak, inky front before me. Summer skies drenched in black lamb nappa leather jackets, modal and organic cotton tees and vests and hand woven denim. The sustainable fabrics show that
Leaden technologies were heavyily pressed onto the clothing. Reversible bombers and showerproof tech jackets were gazed through the motif of Ada + Nik's world; SYN. Meaning "co-" or "with" in Greek, the syllable was symbolic of the + sign that bridges the two creatives together. A chiselled model playfully skews the metallic + structure, sitting atop a oil drum painted clinically with a plus sign.
The dystopian, shadowy materials of the lace and denim finely contrasted the rigid, architectural structures of the clothing itself. An artisan leather jacket incorporated with bespoke pen holders for luxury pen brand Montegrappa injected a signpost of tradition into the collection. There's a lingering edge of East London in the pieces, bringing a poignant, faint echo of the old battling with the cacophony of the new.
There was ~a lot~ of shade thrown during that night. From the black drinks to the black seats to the black hearts of half of the people in the room (come on, it's fashion) black was everywhere. Ada + Nik's SS16 collection is centred on luxury materials in dimly-lit hues, and to be honest, I wouldn't have summer any other way.
Black may be the absence of colour, but Ada + Nik show that it's certainly not the absence of style.
What did you make of Ada + Nik's SS16 collection?