Lena Dunham walked in her first London Fashion Week show today for 16Arlington, the London brand synonymous for its sparkling sequins and effervescent embellishments.
“For us it’s about working with women who really inspire us on a daily basis, and what sets these girls apart is that they’re all doing something positive in the world and changing it for the better,” Marco Capaldo, one of the brand’s co-founders explained before the show.
It comes as little surprise then that one of the brand’s ardent A-list fans is multi-hyphenate Lena Dunham.
Dunham first wore 16Arlington in July 2019 to the UK premiere of Tarantino’s Once Upon A Time in Hollywood. A fiery a-symmetrical dress, lined with ombre feathers, it marked the start of an “organic” friendship between the three.
“She’s really passionate about fashion but has fun with it – and that’s how we feel about it too,” Capaldo explained. “We always knew that once we were confirmed for the show schedule that she’d be the person we’d ask, and when we did she was so excited!”
According to London-based Capaldo and his fellow co-founder Federica Cavenati, Dunham has an amazingly “rich” knowledge of cultural and artistic references and their friendship with her flourished “naturally through our shared loves of fashion and our dogs.”
Her cultural proficiency comes as little surprise given that 33-year-old Dunham, who has admitted to being “a dork for the UK”, is the eldest-daughter of two prominent members of the New York art world, Laurie Simmons and Carroll Dunham.
For 16Arlington, casting Dunham was far from a publicity stunt. Capaldo and Cavenati are steadfast in their mission of casting women of “all different sizes, heights and races.”
“It’s 2020, women aren’t all 6ft, size 4 girls – some are, and that’s great – but not every woman is and that needs to embraced and hopefully that’ll be seen in this show,” Capaldo stated.
The autumn/winter 2020 collection, 26-year-old Capaldo explained, is “all about love,” which seems timely given today’s date: Valentine’s Day.
Fans of the unabashedly fun brand can expect more of the same from this collection – notably sequins and feathers – although, Capaldo admitted, “it definitely feels like the 16Arlington woman has grown up slightly.”
16Arlington – its name is taken from the address of the duo’s first studio on 16 Arlington Street – began showcasing its collections at London Fashion Week in February 2019. The duo presented their designs with aplomb but, after two presentations at Fashion Week, feel as though they have “graduated” and are “unbelievably grateful” for their first show.
What sets Italian-born Capaldo and Cavenati apart is their preference for dressing women who “have a voice.” Among those who they’ve made custom looks for are Adwoa Aboah, Lizzo and Jorja Smith.
The duo confirm that the looks showcased today will indeed by shoppable at their arsenal of global stockists in a few months’ time and they’re excited about that too.
While sleep may be all the short-term future that the couple can currently focus on, there’s no doubt that for the long-term, the future of 16Arlington is twinkling and sparkling bright.