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Jun 29, 2023
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Ludovic de Saint Sernin feted in New York post-Paris fashion show

Jun 29, 2023

​At the Times Square Edition Tuesday night, a group of creative visionaries demonstrated just how far one goes for a great party, especially one in New York, which has a reputation for unforgettable nightlife experiences. Such was the case for Document Journal, which in its first Pride event, brought designer Ludovic de Saint Sernin to the Big Apple two days after showing the 'Lust' collection in Paris together with a spicy dating app Feeld—billed as a safe space to meet like-minded sexual partners—for a private dinner followed by a party featuring a hot ticket six DJ line-up.

Nick Vogelson (left), Ana Kirova (centre), and Ludovic de Saint Sernin (right) in New York - BFA

As guests enjoyed cocktails in the Times Edition's indoor garden Terrace restaurant, de Saint Sernin spoke to FashionNetwork.com about the unique occasion of being celebrated in Manhattan. Wearing a crystal embellished LdSS-logo sheer tank—the motif was also seen on many of the guests, such as Hari Nef, Julia Fox, Jason Wu, Tina Leung, and co-host Mia Khalifa —de Saint Sernin, who was born in Belgium and raised in Paris, shared his adoration for New York.

"Robert Mapplethorpe is one of my original inspirations since I started designing," de Saint Sernin said of the prolific photographer born and raised in Queens. "New York is one of my favorite cities to spend time in, so I just want to spend more time here and get inspired by the city," he continued.

Unsurprisingly it's also good for business.

"It's also one of my biggest markets which inspires me too," he confirmed. The designer whose show kept him from participating in Pride weekend events in Paris and New York over the weekend was looking forward to the super fun evening in his honor but was also planning to work while here.

​"I have a few meetings, so I'll see what happens. You never know; it's New York," he said coyly. The designer had participated in the magazine's latest issue by styling Berlin-based DJ LSDXOXO, aka RJ Glasgow, in his clothing. He flipped through the telephone book-heavy publication at the event to see the final product for the first time. A friend said it was meant to include an interview, but it conflicted with the first and only Ann Demeulemeester show de Saint Sernin designed.

Guests at the Ludovic de Saint Sernin party in New York - BFA

"I can't speak about my departure from Ann Demeulemeester, but I can say I was happy with what I did there," the designer commented. Despite his European breeding, de Saint Sernin speaks accent-free perfect English. "I watched a lot of American TV and movies. I am just cos-playing an American boy from the Valley," he quipped.
It's the sort of freedom of expression that Feeld CEO Ana Kirova sees on the dating app she founded, which provides a safe space for the curious to explore different sexual identities and new partners and boasts over 5 million downloads and over 2 million connections monthly.

​"Dating apps are so vanilla," said the CEO, noting that she saw a gap in this market. While a fan of de Saint Sernin's transparent stylings, she was also keen to explore how her platform could partner with fashion.
"I wouldn't represent a brand on the platform and try to sell it, but we are just figuring out how to partner with the fashion and arts community where people are the most expressive. If you scroll through the profiles on Feeld, you can see how expressive and tapped into culture the users are," she added.
Nick Vogelson, editor-in-chief, creative director, and founder of Document Journal, felt a synergy between de Saint Sernin and Feeld.

"Ludo's first collection in 2017 changed the face and identity of both men's and women's fashion through the lens of unbridled sexuality and queerness, and Feeld recognizes we don't all fit in a box and provides a space to express gender and sexuality," he said to the audience adding of the inclusive environment, "I can't believe it didn't exist until now."

Inside the Ludovic de Saint Sernin party in New York - BFA

The editor says de Saint Sernin's work is more than a clothing collection.

"Ludo's career over the past six years blossomed into a movement; it was a for a queer audience, and Ludo's vision was prescient," he said to FashionNetwork.com, adding, "He breaks barriers with his designs and creativity and can traverse gender and identity. The clothes lean on the feminine side but are for all people."

Vogelson added that Document, Feeld, and de Saint Sernin each celebrate subculture. This post-Pride event followed a weekend in New York that had events hosted by other fashion brands such as Diesel, Jean Paul Gautier, and Mavi Jeans.

While most guests moved from the private dinner to the raging dance party two floors down at the Paradise Club, designer Jason Wu called it a night after supporting his friend Vogelson at the dinner. He was preparing to head out to Boston and Cape Cod to see friends and family for a typical Americana holiday. He hinted the experience might influence his upcoming collection.
"Americana is a big part of my next collection. Europeans have taken claim of American sportswear, and as one of the few indie American designers, I want to own that."

Fair enough. In de Saint Sernin's case, he is a European designer serving up a progressive and modern version of sportswear indeed.

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