Backstage at Luar's Fall 2024 Show

Backstage at Luar's Fall 2024 Show

Story by Maxwell ViceFeb 15, 2024

Raul Lopez, the designer of Luar, has always been a stunt queen. From the viral Timberland heels to the iconic Ana bag named after his grandmother, we tend to think of this luxurious drama that is in the air whenever Raul is around. On a snowy Tuesday night in Bushwick, Raul packed a rusted warehouse with the industry's top personalities and rubber furniture from artist Rich Aybar’s Nostalgia series. The streets were shut down, and the barricades outside were packed with guests an hour before doors even opened. However, no amount of drama could’ve prepared the Luar team for Beyoncé herself making an appearance in Bushwick for their latest Fall 2024 collection “Deceptionista.

Luar has always been a unisex brand, exploring gender fluidity with a mix of luxury and indigenous culture. This stems from Raul’s life as a Dominican New Yorker, taking inspiration from the friends he had around him growing up. Luar has also always been a family unit: From the makeup chair to the after party DJs, every team member is a part of a connected community of QTPOC.

Last year at a seminar, the designer spoke about how they were raised adjacent to the ballroom scene and was known as “the gay boy holding the Femme Queens’ bags at the club.” He loves the fantasy, being able to walk into a club at night with a cunt outfit and feeling powerful in your body. As a nonbinary person myself, I know the power fashion has for human expression and how being able to flip back and forth in your masculine and feminine energy is more of a spiritual practice than a trend.

Raul told PAPER that this season was inspired by 2000s mextrosexuals, exploring masculinity through a heightened style and groomed lens. Most of the models had trims on their pieces that sculpted them in a more masculine way, which was a super refreshing take on “machismos” in styling, finished with school boy gelled hair, long banjee hair extensions and the latest addition to the Starface Hydro-Star family, "Earth Star." Something about seeing a femme presenting model in an oversized, yet snatched, blazer pumping down the runway in heels with a masculine contoured jaw was so juicy. Models’ hands were almost weighed down by larger-than-life stiletto nails, featuring paintings from cathedrals and gold-encrusted Luar plates. Luxurious beige furs and glossy cherry leathers made for some stunning fall palettes.

Raul is no stranger to a stunt, but the biggest stunt of all was Beyoncé taking a seat only seconds before the show begins. We salute the Luar team. In an industry where drama was dying, thank God we have Raul Lopez.

Photography: Maxwell Vice