Physical Element celebrated their 10 year anniversary on Friday with a night that included music, refreshments, and a series of fashion installations spotlighting some of the most popular lines they carry. Since opening in 2003, the store has evolved from focusing primarily on high-end activewear to carrying a wide range of eclectic, sometime avant garde styles for everyday and special occasions from small independent lines both local and global. This was reflected in the sampling of designers shown on Friday.
First two installations featured looks by Art Point, an Austrian line that specializes in unfussy, super-versatile pieces, like jackets that can also be worn as skirts:
The looks were as fashion forward as they were practical, giving them a cool, modern feel.
The next installation featured striking, vibrant knits by Spanish designer Isabel de Pedro and French line Aventures des Toiles (left and center), juxtaposed with a simple white wrap-dress by Portland designer Renee Armstrong (right):
Next up was Rundholz Black Label, a German line that specializes in elaborately draped dresses with a sort of Comme-de-Garcons-meets-new-age-bohemian vibe:
The final installation featured several looks by Moyuru, a Japanese label that does slouchy yet dramatic pieces, contrasting with a minimalist look by Bobkova, an edgy Ukrainian line (second from right).
Moyuru was definitely the most avant garde line shown, and their clothes aren't for everyone, but they exemplify the aesthetic that has made Physical Element stand out from the crowd for the last ten years. A lot of retail has cropped up since 2003, particularly in the Pearl, but Physical Element's particular brand of fantasy, edge and global influence has made it a one-of-a-kind destination.