Summer 2021 is made for the Stella woman in motion, actively dreaming of freedom through a connection with her body, nature and art. Conceived during lockdown, Stella took this moment of pause to question how and why we do everything; launching a conscious conversation about who we are and who we hope to be – defined in the McCartney A to Z Manifesto. The collection reflects this mindful focus on the brand’s core values, repurposing fabrics to minimise waste and made with 65% sustainable materials.
Stella reconnected with and reaffirmed the importance of nature – expressed through a collective desire for movement. Instinctual, experimental silhouettes contrast sportiness against historical cuts, energising a new love for the body and a desire to uplift spirits alongside the brand’s purpose of creating a sustainable fashion industry. The McCartney A to Z Manifesto: Summer 2021 Show video was shot by creative duo Mert and Marcus at Houghton Hall in Norfolk, elaborating on themes of nature, art and fashion.
An edit of graphic neutrals and classic tones is presented in parallel to a palette exploring a rich, natural vibrancy in soft shades of rosy pink, khaki, peach, tangerine orange, sky blue and bamboo. This is energized with joyful bursts of bubble gum and flame red.
A play on BMX-style details, ribbing and seams create a geometric sport softened in organic cotton and linen fabrics. SU21 also features a series of form-fitting dresses, safari jackets and motocross-inspired trousers aiming to harmonise the athletic with the sculptural. Bodycon dresses, cycling shorts and fitted tops made from repurposed lace from past collections bridge sensuality, sportiness and sustainability.
Having the time during lockdown to explore fashion history, a contemporary classicism borrows silhouettes from corsets and bustles – collapsing the structure, adding softness with shapes and seaming that accentuate the female form. Stella’s signature British tailoring includes timeless menswear-inspired silhouettes in khaki and black canvas made with traceable wool and natural linen, given a feminine twist worn overexposed Stellawear – an innovation fusing lingerie and swimwear, made from sustainable Aquafil Econyl® regenerated nylon. Playing with dichotomies of shape, a shrunken three-button jacket is paired with round, voluminous trousers, and an oversized cropped jacket complements high-waisted men’s pants.
Pieces distil feelings of travel, water and sunshine across fluid satin dresses and jumpsuits adorned with oceanic prints – classical shells in navy and white, and fluo coral patterns. These designs decorate bodycon knit leggings and dresses in forest-friendly viscose.
Knitwear continues the season’s athletic energy, with ribbed organic cotton yarn vests and dresses that appear sculpted onto the body. This is elaborated on by t-shirts styled with voluminous trousers in rose and poppy; Stella’s elevated yet effortless take on a tracksuit. This form-fitting moment continues with smooth compact knit shorts and dresses.
This season, 78% of the cotton used is organic – encompassing all denim and jersey, including Stella’s iconic jumpsuits, refreshed with a hand-done dip dye.