Les Benjamins takes inspiration from Dubai for its spring/summer 2023 collection

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Eclectic streetwear brand Les Benjamins have launched their Spring/Summer 2023 collection and cite Dubai as part of their inspiration.

Titled The Horse of the East, the collection is dedicated to horse racing, inspired by the emirate’s love for the sport. “When I lived in Dubai I was in Business Bay and my house was very close to Meydan where all the big horse races happen,” said Bunyamin Aydin, creative director at Les Benjamins.

“My partner would always tell me about her childhood and how it inspired her to dress up for the horse races she attended and create custom pieces for. It’s like a fashion show, everyone dresses up.”

This love of dressing and the technical aspect of equestrian clothing has been blended into a range of garments that are casual and comfortable, yet infused with complex techniques and ancient references.

Inspired by the graphic patterning of silk tops worn by jockeys, Aydin has created a tubular, rounded motif that is now used on a man’s bomber jackets and shorts and a woman’s mid-length skirt with a thigh slit.

Elsewhere, the curved seams of breeches appear as lines that drape over long-sleeved tops and leggings like a second skin, while riding chaps are layered on trousers made from contrasting horse-print fabric.

The brand also revisits the intricate patterns of rugs and kilims in each of its collections. This is manifested in the form of inserts on jackets and on the sides of women’s flared trousers. A standout look is a blue and orange fabric made into a men’s shirt, jacket and shorts, embellished with saddle-shaped flaps held in place with functional rivets.

Combining elements from the west and east, Aydin uses the rigorous discipline of western dressage in a fabulous square crochet made into a stunning men’s shirt and women’s halter dress. Meanwhile, beloved horses are referenced as metal plates, horseshoes and tassels added to tailoring.

“That’s why I called the collection ‘The Horse of the East,'” said Aydin. “There is a mysterious approach to who and what the horse is and what it is about: the horse race and the ceremony.”

Updated June 21, 2022 at 12:30 p.m

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