If Nensi Dojaka skipped showing this season, she certainly wasn’t skimping on designing and evolving her lingerie-meets-tailoring concept. For spring, she’s evolved it in several directions, including denim, minimal jersey pieces, maximum impact chiffon dresses, and even shoes with slender bra straps and sheer zones, echoing (and finishing) the looks and techniques she’s known for.
Coming up with considered fashion takes time (as Phoebe Philo has taught)—time and trial, in the case of female designers. Dojaka laughed that she’s spent much more of the past six months than usual “wearing my things, and getting my own feedback. Everything has to fit, and be comfortable.” She is actually a designer who normally lives in black tailoring. Hence the care she took over shaping a radical new pant suit consisting of a single-breasted jacket with the top part replaced by a bra, paired with skinny trousers.
Silhouette work has been a prime preoccupation of fashion’s most innovative designers this season. Dojaka took georgette—one of her staples—and cut the finest godets into super-flares on the wrists of body suits and jersey dresses and the ankles of leggings. It’s the kind of thing that begs to be danced in. “Huge sleeves that open up as you walk!” Another piece of engineering on a bra-topped empire-line chiffon evening dress was constructed to part in front and trail into a coolly graceful fullness of volume in movement. “I’d love to see someone like Angelina Jolie in that,” Dojaka speculated.
She had paid plenty of attention to designing more of the sculpted, draped ‘naked’ dresses that made her name during the pandemic—pieces constructed with an haute couture level of skill. Still, her focus is on expanding on what Nensi Dojaka can be in terms of daywear. That might mean denims and matching bras, but with the flared chiffon leggings popping out underneath the jeans’ ankles. A styling quirk to set a trend running, that one.
The Dojaka idea for separates—as opposed to her party dresses—is a system of cropped mini-cardigans and semi-sheer knitted skirts, underpinned by high-waist underwear and bras. “I really loved my mum taking me to see ballets when I was young in Albania. Maybe there’s something of that subconsciously in it,” she remarked. “But, really, what I like is that they are flexible. You can play with pieces from all my collections. I’ve thought of that always.”