Anna Sui Staged a High-Fashion Picnic With Pies and Dollhouses

Anna Sui Staged a High-Fashion Picnic With Pies and Dollhouses

by Dylan Kelly

"Home is where the heart is" was the mantra for Anna Sui's Spring 2021 collection. Inspired by an eclectic mix of old-time artwork — Charles Burchfield's depression-era watercolors, Berthe Morisot's 19th century Impressionist paintings and decorative quilts found in the 1966 Czechoslovakian movie Daisies — Sui dreamt up the "Heartland" collection, a polished, picnic-ready range with a homespun feel.

"We've all spent a lot of time inside these past few months — I had not been at home so much since I was a kid!" said Sui of the collection's conception in a statement. "I began thinking about what home means to me — comfort, security, the smells of delectable meals and desserts being made with care, the space to think about what is happening in the world and the people I love. This collection is all about that homey DIY feel, with a little bit of polish thrown in."

The digital presentation opens to a frame of a delectable-looking pie baked by Instagram's dessert sculpturist Karen Long Freidt, speaking to the collection's made-at-home style; models pose in front of a dollhouse painted by Sui's long-time partner Sarah Oliphant with warm hues of pink and blue. One-by-one, the models enter the frame in comfortable-yet-elevated, versatile looks — each made with sustainability in mind.

Soojoo Parks' black organza dress features decorative pink flowers and reminds us of the label's sensuality. Sasha Knysh's short-sleeved, apron-like overcoat matches appropriately with wide-legged pants, while Sara Grace Wallerstedt's flowy, floral dress is accessorized with a checker-lined face mask. Negligée maxi dresses, quilted jackets, at-the-knee shorts, decorated sweatshirts and reimagined Teva sandals round out the line, while prints in sunbathed colors mix with painted laces for a personal feel.

Reviving vintage fads is Sui's forté, and this season, the designer called for several upcycled, make-it-cool-again collaborations. "I read about Riverside Tool and Dye that makes gorgeous tie-dyes using dead stock clothing; Fellow Earthings for Mondottica, the eyewear company, is creating frames out of recycled plastic scraps from past Anna Sui sunglasses, and Birdie Purl is making crocheted handbags out of recycled t-shirt knit fabric," said Sui. "I decided to collaborate with these small companies, along with Gifted Acorn, that fashioned brightly colored recycled aluminum can crocheted hats using my family's empty Spindrift cans to incorporate more sustainable materials in my collection."

Watch Anna Sui's Spring 2021 presentation, below.

Photos courtesy of Anna Sui