12 Women’s Labels Worth Knowing

Style Lists

The fashion world is known for its ever-changing opinion on tastes and trends, and no one knows this more than the new generation of designers. Hitting the runway with creations of full-blown creativity and innovation, they have made an impression on a shifting fashion system; no longer are they standing by with run-of-the-mill fashion shows or collections, they are reaching further than ever before—whether making a change in the fashion calendar or evoking new technology into their designs.

From New York City to Tokyo, each name on this list of women’s labels has made an impression on the modern fashion industry-at-large. With unique design, original technique and constant imagination, their talents have rightly garnered followers abroad and in their own circles, but here’s a chance to get a bit more acquainted with them.

1. Anrealage

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The Japanese label Anrealage can always be counted upon to deliver some eye-opening tech-fused garments onto the runway, and that’s exactly what happened when designer Kunihiko Morinaga presented his Autumn/Winter 2016 offering during Paris Fashion Week. Having teamed up with the computer programmer Toru Urakawa, together they created a series of black-and-grey fabric patterns to mimic the static of old analogue televisions. During an act of ingenious creation, the smartly tailored garments flickered and morphed into floral motifs and more while the models walked in a peculiar-looking plastic box. Of course, this is exactly the sort of innovation Anrealage delivers time and time again—and exactly why they’re the top of list of labels to know.

2. Yang Li

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A photo posted by LECLAIREUR (@leclaireur) on

As a designer, Yang Li has a distinct voice to be heard. His style is a blend of classic tailoring and architectural silhouettes, and as a Central Saint Martins dropout and a former Raf Simons intern he has proven that innate talents can go the distance. Clean, minimalist and undeniably punk influenced, Li’s designs are expressive and easy to wear with luxurious fabrics. Shoppers can find his garments sold at L’Eclaireur, Dover Street Market and LN-CC, as well as several others, and he’s certainly one to keep an eye on.

3. Christopher Raeburn

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British designer Christopher Raeburn is a pioneer in sustainable design for men and women, so much so that he’s also been mentioned in our list of men’s labels. Launched in 2008, Raeburn’s eponymous label has become a must-see presentation at London Fashion Week and its male counterpart, London Collections: Men’s. His ability to transform pre-existing materials into garments ready for a new life in high streetwear—and in the most wearable and innovative ways—makes him an irrefutable addition to this list.

4. Each x Other

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Always the bridge between fashion and the worlds of art and poetry, Each x Other translated the phrases of poet Robert Montgomery into well-placed motifs throughout its Fall/Winter 2016 collection: on the collars of sweatshirts and the wrist of a bomber jacket, as well as dispersed across several other key pieces, such as “Poetry Finally Kills ‘Celebrity Culture’” that appeared on one hoodie. Based in Paris and New York City, the creative lovechild of designer Ilan Delouis and artistic director Jenny Mannerheim offers a too-cool wardrobe of streetwear options with graphic prints and an all-too-present collaborative spirit that has gained a loyal artist fan base.

5. Wanda Nylon

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Another label taking the streetwear market by storm hails from Paris and just recently sent its second collection down the runway at Paris Fashion Week: Wanda Nylon. Founded by designer Peter Hornstein and stylist Johanna Senyk (who has also worked in casting for such names as J.W. Anderson and The Row), this label makes waterproof fabrics look ever so cool—with eco-friendly vinyl, polyurethane and PVC standing out among the bunch. Their garments are said to be up to 90% recyclable and could be described as fashion-forward rainwear, but take a moment to glance their collections and you’ll noticed their ready-to-wear separates are far more practical than wet-weather options.

6. Iris Van Herpen

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Normal rules don’t seem to apply to Dutch designer Iris van Herpen, who has simultaneously fused expert craftsmanship with innovative technique since launching her eponymous label in 2007. Her collections appear as wearable couture with a level of handwork not typically seen on the ready-to-wear runway at Paris Fashion Week, and while she’s certainly not a newbie to the industry her ultra-feminine garments are certainly worth a mention on this list. Her designs are highly technical and usually boast a few new designer-created materials. With collaborations with the likes of Björk and Tilda Swinton, as well as Van Herpen’s early adoption of 3D-printing technology, here’s a label that will continue making a major impression on seasons to come.

7. Jacquemus

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Since winning the 2015 Special Jury Prize as part of the LVMH Prize, Paris-based designer Simon Porte Jacquemus has come a long way with the label he launched in 2012. Careful to create each collection around a specific theme, every season finds the designer displaying another unseen facet of himself as an artist. Equally surreal and fashion-forward, this label’s worth a watch if not only for the runway show; during his Spring/Summer 2015 show, he sent down a big red ball of yarn and later a white horse. The Paris crowd is buzzing with mentions of the label, and with stockists piling up it won’t be long before he’s even larger in the States.

8. Markus Lupfer

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Markus Lupfer wouldn’t be a new name to the industry insider. With a long background with such names as Armand Basi, Ruffo, Cacharel and Mulberry, and with fans that include celebrities Madonna, Cara Delevigne, Olivia Palermo and Anna Kendrick, Lupfer has all the makings for a day-or-night event. Knitwear and tailored separates have been a forte in the past, but he’s quickly garnering an almost cult following with his prowess in prints, embroideries and graphic embellishments that appeals to a wide age group and looks both easy and dressed-up.

9. Sid Neigum

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With his recent debut at London Fashion Week Fall/Winter 2016, Toronto-based designer Sid Neigum has caught the attention buyers and critics alike; he may have been one of the last designers to present his collection during the week, but he certainly wasn’t the least. A graduate from the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York City, the London crowd welcomed Neigum with open arms, thanks to his exploration in the art of pattern making and neutral color palette. He didn’t often stray from the black and grey, but his blanket coats, wrap skirts and cape-like tops were memorable. If any of these names on this list are to linger, please let it be this one; Sid Neigum is the designer to watch.

10. Palmer//Harding

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Another design duo to add to the list is Levi Palmer and Matthew Harding’s Palmer//Harding. Launched in 2012 by the two Central Saint Martins-trained designers, the London-based label has since been known for excellent shirting – and their artistic inspirations. For their recent Fall/Winter 2016 collection presented during London Fashion Week, they were inspired by the shredded canvases of American contemporary artist Nation Peter, and without appearing too surreal they managed to produce a ready-to-wear lineup of expectedly ideal shirting balanced with a few more unexpected options (ruffled halter shirts, fluid frocks, boxy leather skirts and a stapled-together ponyskin mosaic material) that all deserve a closer look.

11. Self-Portrait

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In our recent roundup “New York Fashion Week: Fall/Winter 2016,” we made sure to include the works of Han Chong, the Malaysian designer and mastermind behind the label Self-Portrait. Since launching his label in 2013, Han Chong has managed to do remarkable things with lace; so much in fact that he has garnered the attention of several of Hollywood’s most gorgeous celebrities. His designs are feminine with an unmistakable romanticism, but most importantly they are wearable. Take a scroll down Self-Portrait’s Instagram (@MrSelfPortrait), and you’ll begin to see exactly why he’s worth a watch.

12. Sacai

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Japanese designer Chitose Abe founded Sacai in 1998 (making it the oldest label on this list), but the technical talents she fostered at iconic fashion labels Comme des Garçons and Junya Watanabe before breaking out on her own have never ceased to influence her in ways that are unexpected and fully worth high-praise and following. Though in the past 15 years, she has already garnered a long list of admirers, not least of which include Anna Wintour, Karl Lagerfeld and Suzy Menkes. And there’s good reason for it: Her garments are urban and sporty, delicate and full of construction and technique. She’s also married to Junichi Abe, the founder and designer of another great label, Kolor.

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