Hussein Chalayan’s 2008 Spring/Summer collection

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Words Anna Bates

“Higher forces” was the theme for Hussein Chalayan’s 2008 Spring/Summer collection. The clothes are adorned with moving laser beams, a feat made possible by the expertise of London-based designer Moritz Waldemeyer.

The lasers are attached to the fabric – also adorned with Swarovski crystals – with tiny brass hinges controlled by servo motors, which are pre-programmed to dictate the beams’ direction and timing. “When the lasers shine up at the crystals, they glow like lava – it’s an amazing effect,” says Waldemeyer.

The collection was inspired by the idea of ancient sun worship along with the current obsession with celebrity, and was presented in a short film by photographer Nick Knight shown during Paris fashion week.

The lasers “refract light from the body and bounce off mirrors surrounding it,” says Chalayan. “This represents the interplay between a scrutinised figure and the audience.”

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