Atelier Cillian Fall 2023

Two seasons ago New York Men’s Day (NYMD) returned after being sequestered due to the COVID-19 pandemic. And though fashion industry professionals were excited about the return of NYMD, it has taken a few seasons for NYMD to regain its fashion traction, so to speak.

The fall 2023 has become the best NYMD season to date, post-COVID-19 pandemic, with fashion designers significantly upping the ante when it comes to creating menswear collections that are projecting toward the future. And that projection toward the future is a literal expansion of what masculinity is and what the modern man will have as a part of his wardrobe.

Atelier Cillian’s NYMD debut occurred for the fall 2022 season; however, this fall 2023 collection promises to put the brand on the menswear map perhaps more than any other brand presenting during NYMD. Creative director Stephan Mikhail has had other fashion collections in the past; however, this new reincarnation is perhaps his most complete and cohesive attempt.

Titled “Mallevs Maleficarvm,” Atelier Cillian’s latest collection aptly displays Mikhail’s fascination with unusual and innovative artifacts of times gone by. For his inspiration this season, Stephen Mikhail referenced Heinrich Kramer’s infamous 1486 treatise “Mallevs Maleficarvm” about witchcraft.

In this collection Mikhail demonstrates what was assumed in the Middle Ages to be the pagan elements of nature juxtaposed against the metallic purity of the Roman Catholic church. All this is evidenced in Mikhail utilization of metallic silvers, facsimiles of armor, and monochromatic color patterns, as well as well-tailored silky male blouses, and skin-tight trousers.

Stephen Mikhail has always been acknowledged for his now-and-next fashion, particularly when it comes to men’s fashion. So, the design perspective in this outing is no surprise. Still, Stephen Mikhail has accomplished something quite unique in this collection.

While many menswear designers are pushing for a inclusive and expansive design aesthetic that includes a more binary projection, most fall short in this respect, creating collections that most men would never purchase for their wardrobes. Many of the garments look like costumes from some science fiction project or a Broadway show or rock concert. Mikhail, with his fall 2023 collection, has achieved what so few menswear designers are able to achieve, creating menswear garments that contain both the now-and-next aesthetic combined with a binary approach to menswear that a lot of men would purchase.

Images courtesy of Agentry PR

Bravo Stephen!!

—William S. Gooch

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