“Harajuku Sportswear” Hits The U.S.

Longtime stylist to Lady Gaga, former creative director of Mugler, and now artistic director of Diesel, Nicola Formichetti is an expert juggler. Between various big-time gigs (and his adorable pups) he somehow finds the time to work on independent projects — the biggest and frilliest of which is now shoppable. Last fall, Formichetti debuted his first full ready-to-wear collection for Nicopanda, the line to which he lent his own nickname. Though it was previously only available at a glow-in-the-dark pop-up, it's now occupying shelf space at Opening Ceremony, with special in-store installations at the retailer's New York and L.A. flagships.
Formichetti describes the collection as "Harajuku sportswear," which accurately captures the feminine, ruffle detailing and oversized, unisex silhouettes that make it up. In a press release quoted by Opening Ceremony, the designer said "This is a collection for a try-anything culture. You're either brave enough to wear it, or you're not." Starting at $95 for a bow ribbon T-shirt and capping out at a $595 for a ruffled bomber jacket, Nicopanda breaks with our expectations of traditional spring wear. While there are pastels and dress-like hemlines — all givens in the springtime — the pieces subvert femininity in favor of a cooler, gender-neutral, Lolita-inspired look. Get your non-comformist fashion fix by checking out Nicopanda's spring '15 collection, ahead.