Concorde 005: Layering Superpowers Unlocked
Plus sick watches high & low, a great up-and-coming L.A. line, & more "unbeatable recon"
Welcome to Concorde, a new 2x monthly creation from Blackbird Spyplane where Erin takes the lead. You could call it a women’s vertical, but the insights, intel and “cute swag information” transcend gender. The full Concorde archive lives here…
Happy 2023 & welcome to Concorde 005 !!
In today’s sletter I’m tackling our first “Personal Concorde” question, rounding up a RAFT of sick watches that don’t look preposterously oversized on small wrists but aren’t overly feminine — including the ‘70s-era tank I just bought (the first watch I’ve copped in my adult life?!) at a very cool vintage watch shop. Along the way we highlight watch intel from Spyfriends like Hayley Williams and Tyler, The Creator. (Don’t sleep on the watch Kate Berlant shared with us this past week, either.)
Also on today’s “Concorde Menu”:
How to unlock the swag superpower that is layering and styling multiples of the same garment — using tops you probably already own to create new 💡IDEAS💡 and ShApES.
A “New Heat Alert” on a fantastic up-and-coming line, designed and made-to-order in L.A. from beautiful materials in beautiful colors.
Let’s get to it!
— Erin & Jonah
Here at Spyplane HQ we’re longstanding fans of wearing 2 button-up shirts at once. When Shirt #2 slides into place over Shirt #1 we might even shout “2 Shirts!” in the joyous style of 2 Chainz. Doubling up on collared tops (or even tripling them, as Jonah has been known to do at his nuttiest, with a collared jacket completing the trifecta) can be extremely swaggy, tapping into the principle that Repetition of a Form with Minor Variation can be pleasing-verging-on-entrancing to behold.
But my notion of “advanced layering” grew exponentially the other day, when I saw this IG post (below) from Giovanna Flores, a great young designer who re-imagines secondhand clothing into new pieces, in the same art-fashion-upcycling vein as legend-in-the game Susan Cianciolo or the NYC line SC103. (Spyfriend Laia Garcia-Furtado wrote about Flores’s Fall 2022 show at Vogue, here.)
…IS THIS THE COOLEST WAY TO WEAR 2 SWEATSHIRTS AT ONCE?!
Something about this image of a cornflower-blue crewneck sweatshirt, paired with an almost imperceptibly darker blue sweatshirt to simulate a scarf & sash, captivated me. I keep looking at it. Why? Part of the answer comes down to color harmony: the sense of depth and structure achieved by these two extremely close hues, almost like one is the other’s shadow.
But it also makes me think about how and when a garment can be reduced to the “mere” piece of cloth it ultimately is (see the concept behind Issey Miyake’s APOC line) and thereby worked into an outfit in some cool, unconventional way. Like, bro… <profound stoner voice>… What if a “sweatshirt” is not some immutable thing, but rather a piece of cloth temporarily occupying a certain state, like a gas becoming a liquid becoming a solid and back again, in an open-ended process of JAWN FLUX??
Layering two of the same garment obviously isn’t unprecedented… Most familiarly, there’s the layered-sweater looks that people nicknamed like Bunny and Oatsie have worn for ages to country clubs: The classic twinset, or one sweater tied around the shoulders of another. Both can come off feeling a bit too ordered & uptight for me — I gravitate towards more playful, bulkier, and even more “misshapen” layering styles. For instance…
Let’s break it down: