Masha Popova has mastered the art of nostalgia within fashion bringing guests back to decades we all recognise, whilst fusing her own Ukrainian born heritage into the brand. For her AW24 presentation, titled GLI$TEN, we were brought back to the all too familiar 2010s, a decade that defined her (and many of our) teenage years with maximalist jewellery, low-rise ‘bumsters’ and yes… the skinny jean (who saw it coming?). 

The Central Saint Martins alumnus who has interned for Maison Margiela and Celine has a unique perspective on the industry after growing up in an industrial area of the Ukraine and initially studying Architecture before her fashion degree. Her work has now been seen on Dua Lipa, Kylie Jenner, and Bella Hadid among others. 

Inspired by a fake reality that many brands face in the early years of their career, Popova describes the mood of the collection as the “façade versus reality”. She highlights the duality of “dressing celebrities, champagne parties, [but] living in a garage” and draws personal parallels with this as a young designer. Deconstructing these flashy styles combined with inspiration from cult series Skins further informed the collection and its subversive nature.

Popova’s trademark washed-out denim treatment was not lost this season with denim zip trench coats to hooded denim mini dresses, and now with jerseys also given the same treatment in a slightly slouchier form. The iconic 2010 jeggings and hidden heels combo was also a defining look, familiar yet fresh with large swirling prints, spliced cut-outs and experimental fabrication in bright pinks and oranges. Bumster jeans were taken to a new level with cheek cut-outs and delicate Zhilyova lingerie peeked through while shoes featured silk devore to recreate matted faux fur textures, a further nod to the duality of the glamorously dishevelled era.

Whilst denim and muted earth tones ruled the collection, pops of pink and orange brought a playful youthfulness acknowledging Popova’s teenage era. Closing the show, we saw 2010 in full swing with wedges, skinny jeans, and a flowing open shirt revealing an oversized pendant necklace. The show encapsulated a time that feels stylistically distant and made it perfectly relevant with a raw old-school glam twist.

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Words: Sylvia Shoshan
Photography courtesy of Raven Agency