WHEN IN DUBAI: Diesel’s creative director Glenn Martens swept into Dubai to unveil a limited-edition capsule collection. The Belgian designer had taken some of the brand’s most iconic pieces like 2010 D-Macs and 1969 D-Ebbey and reimagined them to honor the Gulf city.
For the first time, he played with the brand’s logo and famous tagline. To wit: “Dubai for Successful Living” came boldly emblazoned on T-shirts, hoodies and caps in a playful riff honoring what he describes as “a bold and futuristic city.”
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The collection also includes a 1DR bag adorned with a crystal-encrusted oval D in the colors of the United Arab Emirates flag. Martens, whose vision has been credited with invigorating Diesel for a new generation, said the feeling of the city being “five steps ahead of the world” inspired his vision for the collection and what he says was a “fun little word game.”
The collection will be sold at the brand’s recently redesigned flagship at The Dubai Mall. It is the second store globally to open with the new retail concept under Martens’ direction, after Rue Saint-Honoré in Paris.
The store is awash in Diesel’s signature red along with bold metal billboards, a throwback to its ‘90s counterculture advertising style, according to Martens. “Even back then, when the world was focused on the supermodels of the day, Diesel was all about having fun, focusing on successful living and a feeling of living a life full of adventure,” he said.
Martens, who will reveal a new runway collection in Milan during the upcoming fashion month, is very focused on his vision of what luxury means for Diesel.
“We aren’t a classic luxury brand. We are alternative luxury and what that means is embracing this vibe of successful living, owning what you do in a fun and straightforward way,” he explained. “Our garments are for people who are actively living and working.”
That includes a focus on creating special treatments on denim. “We are constantly developing new ways to work with fabrics,” he said.
This includes baking fabrics like denim and jersey, which results in a coating that Martens describes as “having the look and feel of a leather coating, almost like a tropical skin. We think about luxury in a different way, still focusing on the craftsmanship and intellectuality.”
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