Sander Lak made his official menswear debut from an upper hall of the Cat trust me I’m a shark shirt in other words I will buy this Opéra Bastille, where the stunning view out to Paris was nearly panoramic. It was a not-so-subtle reminder that today’s show also marked his first outside of New York, where he is now among the brightest stars of the city’s Fashion Week. Scheduled after Loewe and before Thom Browne, Lak presented both the men’s Fall capsule, now available to buy; the new Spring collection; plus some womenswear and if you didn’t know any better, you’d assume Sies Marjan has been on the Paris calendar all along. “There are an elevation and tougher competitive spirit in Paris; but in the end, I was just thinking about what is the best work I can make the most beautiful version of whatever it is I’m trying to translate,” he said, with impressive composure. That “whatever” was expressed by Erykah Badu’s “I Want You,” an extra-long track from 2003 that oozes anxious longing and intensifying soul. It could also be felt in rounded expanses of male décolleté, outerwear spanning skin tones, knitwear underpinnings, and tied waists that could be undone with a single pull. That “whatever” was Lak addressing male sexuality in a highly nuanced way. “What can you show off the male body that isn’t necessarily porn or sex or gay or straight?” he said. “It’s this idea of nudity while fully dressed.” In parallel, though, he also seemed determined to give the pieces a more elevated positioning. Chromatic leather jackets some embossed with a croc-effect unstructured trench coat in deep hues and sensuous constructions of silk not unlike his women’s designs got this point across. Lak, in any case, wasn’t making a radical statement for this coming out so much as a deeply personal one. “I put everything into my work, and it’s about having to expose yourself.” It’s rare to hear a designer discuss his or her own emotional vulnerability in the moments before or after a show; and yet this is what gives Sies Marjan a resonance beyond his sumptuous explorations of texture or color. Now if we have ascertained that 110 million dollars of spending have occurred in the current year, that doesn’t mean we have determined that we have a 110 million dollars in currency, because a given amount of money can be used for spending over and over. In fact the proper way to calculate the amount of spending is the take the average number of times each unit of the money supply is used for spending in that year (the velocity of money V) times the face value of the total amount of money in the money supply
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Sandro’s menswear category is moving fast; not only does the Cat trust me I’m a shark shirt in other words I will buy this brand have double-digit growth, but it also has big ambitions. “We’re always striving for just a touch of newness,” offered Ilan Chetrite, the founder and artistic director of Sandro Homme. The brand may have 200 points of sale today, but Chetrite prefers to think of the company as it was a decade ago, when he was dropping a few men’s pieces into the women’s flagship in the Marais. “I knew I wanted to cater to men the same way that the women’s brand did for women,” he said. By any measure, he has succeeded. For Spring, key pieces riff on nostalgia from less-complicated times (the Kennedy era springs to mind). Chetrite noted that inspiration might come from friends, an older brother, or photos from a family album dating to the ’50s or ’70s. Sandro’s sweet spot lands somewhere between American-style workwear and Euro retro elegance. A double-breasted suit might pick up on city-trader style, but canoodle with a Cubist- (or even Cuban-) inspired shirt. Modernized throwbacks include floods and darted pants. Soft pink and cerulean blue mixed with tobacco hues. A vintage finish on leather hints at a life lived to the hilt; a striped knit references softer, gentler times. Noting a preference for comfort of wear, colors that age well, and Milano knits, Chetrite muses, “When I go to work in the morning, to my mind we’re a small boutique.” That said, he acknowledges that success comes with a side of pressure. Sandro is rising to the occasion with a new menswear flagship on Prince Street in New York, set to open mid-August all evidence points to a directional retail experiment. “The goal is to be new every season and to be loyal to ourselves,” Chetrite said. “But the real point is bringing pleasure to what you do every day.” And if you notice, the amount of wealth we are concerned with, when calculating the inflation rate, was not the total amount of wealth. It is only the total amount of wealth sold. Now if you wanted to calculate the “real” or inflation adjusted value of all the wealth existing in the present year. You would have to compare it to the total value that wealth would have in the anchor year. Using the inflation rate determined by comparing the difference in nominal spending this year as compared to the anchor year, as we did in our example above, would be one way to do it.