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COS's latest capsule collection takes inspiration from Bauhaus style

'Archive Editions' celebrates the centenary of the foundation of the design school

COS's latest capsule collection takes inspiration from Bauhaus style 'Archive Editions' celebrates the centenary of the foundation of the design school

This year marks the 100th anniversary of the founding of the Staatliches Bauhaus, the most important European design school of the last century, created in Weimar by Walter Gropius in 1919. The school remained open only for fourteen years but gave its name to an entire artistic and architectural style that defined art and design for decades to come. To celebrate its birth, COS recovered thirteen items from its archives and gathered them in the Archive Editions capsule collection that reflects the style and philosophy of Bauhaus, inspired by its colors, lines and aesthetical principles.

The basic principle of Bauhaus is functionalism: shape must match function. In the words of Mies Van Der Rohe, the great master of modernist architecture and last director of the school, less is more, function and harmony are the main guidelines of all the arts. It is with these principles in mind that COS has chosen which items of its archives to recover.

The Bauhaus school combines craftsmanship and fine arts, and cultivates the idea of creating a Gesamtkunstwerk – a total work of art – in which all the arts would be brought together. For COS, we have always sought inspiration in the art world because that's where trends and innovation begin, says Karin Gustafsson, creative director of the brand.

Gustafsson's goal was to draw inspiration from the principles of the artistic movement to create clothes that were modern, practical and above all classical enough to resist the fickleness of fashion and surpass the concept of seasonality. The recovery of rectangular and circular silhouettes recalls the frequent use by Bauhaus artists of geometric shapes and the almost monochromatic palette of the collection (all items are grey, except the four white shirts) is inspired by the famous Dessau building that housed the school.

The collection consists of thirteen pieces: six for men, six for women and one accessory. The key piece of the menswear section is definitely the collarless wool coat from the FW15, a very classic item with minimalistic finishes such as almost invisible pockets and its clean and essential silhouette. The asymmetrical tube dress from the FW08 is instead the item that defines the womanswear, with its strong structure, adjustable shoulder strap and double fold on the back that sets the volumes, adding a modernist touch.

In addition to these two pieces, the collection includes two shirts, a blazer, a skirt and a coat with sculptural lines for the woman, as well as a wool and leather bracelet with a curved cut that represents a minimalist reinterpretation of the classic accessory. For the menswear side, on the other hand, there are classic pieces such as the shirt with invisible slots, classic wool pants, a sweater and a t-shirt with a square neck and a wool apron designed to invite the wearer to play with the layering with a new garment of men's wardrobe.

The research process and the reworking of individual archival pieces have been intense, as Cristophe Copin, Head of Menswear Design at COS says: "We never take anything literally – it's too easy. This is how we question everything: taking as much information as possible and then choosing our reading of the Bauhaus, our way of expressing its message."

COS's Archive Editions capsule collection is available online and in selected COS stores. Explore here the Women's Collection and here the Men's Collection.