Whether you are male or female it makes no difference: Acne stores have long been places where you can wander off the designated rails. Now with a new transvestite and cross-dressing collection, developed in conjunction with Candy magazine, gender bending is easier than ever.
In silk crepe and Italian denim the new collection consists of three shirts, all slightly different takes on the classic, traditionally masculine western style. Design details play with proportions, while dramatic neck bows, ruffled wrist cuffs or puffed shoulders add subtle feminine touches. The shirts are named after their inspirations - all Dynasty characters: Alexis is a tribute to Joan Collins; Krystal to Linda Evans; and Sammy Jo to Heather Locklear.
Candy is the first fashion magazine to celebrate transvestism, and was launched last year by maverick Madrid-based publisher Luis Venegas. A collection for Acne that champions androgyny is a perfect collaboration, says Acne founder Jonny Johansson. 'I'm in this business to have fun and to enjoy myself, and I feel that Luis is too. This collection touches on ideas I have always played with when designing for Acne, the tension between male and female and what happens when you shift things around a bit.'
There's an important distinction between transexual and 'gender neutral', says Venegas. 'I knew from the very beginning I wanted to play with the idea of adding feminine details to a classic denim shirt. I didn't want the shirts to become unisex, in fact I wanted exactly the opposite. I wanted pieces that create a bit of gender confusion.'
They say you can't please everyone, but ironically, in catering specifically for a style-focused minority, Acne and Candy might have done just that.