Patrick Michael Hughes Senior Fashion Editor, Men's Fashion Writer
War, a state of emergency and inescapable destruction are still raging in the fight for the liberation of Ukraine form Russian invasion. Once again fashion history affirms the British Blitz statement that 'fashion is indestructible.' Form follows power, style is resilient and fashion is always reflective of cultural situation and narrative.
RUSLAN BAGINSKIY is a Ukrainian head wear and accessory designer based in in the city Lviv in western Ukraine just forty miles form the Polish boarder. Earlier this year he moved his atelier form the capital Kyiv located in the center of the country. BAGINSKIY began designing in Kyiv 2017. He was born in Lviv and began his career there as a university student. His success has been widely captured in street style photography by the followers of celebrity style such as Taylor Swift and other women dubbed the "RB Girls" The men's market presence for the brand has been expanding in recent seasons.
Winter 2022/2023 collection is handcrafted, with silhouettes that are on familiar terms with wardrobes of all genders. BAGINSKIY's 'Baker Boy' a silhouette which is a version of the working class late nineteenth century working class style is fashioned in large brown and off white Houndstooth and a military olive green wool, both highlighting the hand embroidered chain stitched RB logo, featuring embroidery is part of what makes these items Ukrainian .
Hats with military heritage such as the bucket hat silhouette worn by American troops during World War II as a form of camouflage are seen in tweed and Houndstooth. The beret originally worn by French Chasseurs Alpins (mountain infantry force), La Résistance of WWII to Latin guerrilla leader Che Guevara and the activist Black Panther Movement in America has a noteworthy presence in this winter's offering in a variety of textures.
RUSLAN BAGINSKIY men's hattery statement is to embrace style, however make sure it reflects the larger narrative of the moment far beyond trend. Men's hats are not in a fashion moment of musing aloof mid-twentieth century corporate nostalgia nor hat-less Tweets about the joy of an endless digital day indoors. The look of men's hattery is ready for moments of engagement in the street and says working man to common cause.
Cowboys and knightly styles are also part of the collection. BAGINSKIY's version is a felted wool blocked cowboy hat in a Brutalist tones of off white contributes to color statements being made this winter. The knitted head wear is also instep with an overall theme, 'watch caps' and medical aid toned headbands underscoring form and function in even in shearling. The most interesting knit s the brand's button on hood reminiscent of ancient defensive covering for the body worn under armor and helmets.
In Europe the war in Ukraine will have an impact on the forthcoming fashion emerging from the Central European markets such as Berlin and to the north in Copenhagen.
RUSLAN BAGINSKIY is a brand to pay attention to 'RB Men' is just getting started and it won't be long before there is more than a trickling of apparel but one full of new hope and optimism .