Bradelis S/S 2018

Jessica Zhang, Contributing Writer

Bradelis New York is known for its shapewear and everyday luxury lingerie, as the label advertises. It’s Spring/Summer 2018 collection, “Fearless”, makes it clear that Bradelis doesn’t hope to only reshape women’s silhouettes but to reshape the way women perceive their silhouettes. The collection’s title speaks to  designer Akiyo Hirakubo’s mission — women should be able to reshape their own physique because today, beauty isn’t an all-defining personal quality anymore. Hirakubo hopes to help every woman feel fearless.

The Japanese designer, who studied in the U.S., was fascinated by how lingerie could impact women after noting that functional shapewear and fashionable lingerie were both staples in her college roommate’s wardrobe. Inspired by this experience, Hirakubo hopes to promote the idea that function and fashion should not be a dichotomy in clothing — nor should strength and beauty be a dichotomy in women. Feeling beautiful is a source of empowerment, a form of reclaiming agency. To this end, Hirakubo’s pieces combine the sleek simplicity of American lingerie design with the uniquely shape-enhancing construction of Japanese lingerie craftsmanship. Just as with previous seasons, this collection’s pieces featured intricate laces and floor-dusting capes that set its garments far apart from what is typically thought of as shapewear.

After the show, Hirakubo posed with her models who she purposely selected to represent a wider range of body types than many typical lingerie shows. The one thing she hopes these pieces communicate to women is that beauty is like bamboo — strong, but flexible.

Email Jessica Zhang at [email protected]