Backstage at Patrik Ervell

Patrik Ervell usually keeps mum after his runway shows, but was relatively relaxed after his Valentine’s Day showing. “I’m always sad when the collection is over,” he said, but this time around the post-partem was more of a relief. Perhaps it’s that he got one of his heavier references, an America in decline, off his chest. Or it’s that his dog, Lucy, hates having models in the studio and gets aggressive with them. So now Ervell’s got her off his back, and he can relax.


Ervell’s American story always finds a metaphor in a Baroque romance with youth—and indeed the boys were as young as ever. But another inspiration, said the designer backstage, was, “masculine women who wear men’s clothes,” and the show’s slam dunk was a woman who walked in not-quite-drag. Ervell explained her inclusion as “partly a commercial decision. Women have always bought my clothes in pretty good numbers. Especially now, why not make it clear that it’s also available for women.”


There were heavy coats atop skinny legs, in rich tweeds and easier tailoring. It looked as if Ervell had really paid attention to pants this time around. Outfits were in melange fabrics in turquoise and purple, technical fabrics brightly dyed, and a yellow Paddingtoin Bear raincoat. Does Ervell like Paddigton bear? “Not especially.”



Assistants packing up backstage. All photos by Alex Gartenfeld.