ERL FW23 Explores the Evolution of 1970s Trust Fund Babies

Eli Russell Linnetz’s acronymic fashion label ERL pulled back the curtain on its Fall 2023 collection during Paris Fashion Week, commanding Dover Street Market Paris’ showroom with a range that cinematically explores the corruption behind generational wealth. In simpler terms, the brand’s seventh collection, titled “Greed: The American Gold Rush,” effectively documents the emergence of trust fund babies in the 1970s.

“The story starts on the Oregon Trail, the family finding gold and striking it rich,” the collection notes read. “Their descendants in San Francisco in the ’70s blowing through their trust funds — eventually becoming sellouts as investment bankers during the housing crisis, and later, turning into Wall Street anarchists.”

The plotline translates to clothes in three movements that span the wealth’s Western origins to the inheritance spenders’ modern day. The first chapter emphasizes workwear, with baggy denim and pocketed trousers forming the dress code for those on the Trail. Next, primary colors and floral graphics saturate button-ups, zip jackets, skirts and dresses, referencing both Americana and ’70s hippie styles in an “acid trip mash-up,” as the brand puts it, that is quite simply unique. There’s a stronger investigation into womenswear, eveningwear and suiting this season, with sequin and taffeta-covered designs emulating Wall Street’s richness in the final installment.

Meanwhile, the collection includes more than 70 technicolor prints, each of which was inspired by ’70s iron-on graphics. Motifs galvanized by Dennis Hopper’s movies pay homage to the Hopper Compound, or ERL’s new studio space, in Venice, and patchwork, made via collage, appears throughout.

Take a look at ERL’s Fall/Winter 2023 collection, “Greed: The American Gold Rush,” above.

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