Fashion

Gender-Fluid Designer Harris Reed's Fashion Diary

As told by Harris Reed.
Reading time 5 minutes
Photograph courtesy Harris Reed

Photography and Styling by Harris Reed

A lot can happen in the spur of a moment. Just ask British-American designer Harris Reed. While pursuing a fashion degree at Central Saint Martens, Reed caught the attention of stylist Harry Lambert, who famously worked with another Harry—Harry Styles. As the latter took to a stage in the Dutch town of Amsterdam, he emerged wearing a New Romantic-inspired take on classic rock’n’roll style, wrapped up in genius British tailoring. Reed’s creation went absolutely viral, prompting Reed to global admiration.

“Personally, Reed dresses to invite looks and stares, to blur the preconceived fault-lines people have about gender and sexuality,” reads a passage on Reed’s website. “It's baffling that people are still shocked by a puffy sleeve, but until they're not, Reed will be unapologetically donning and designing them.”

It is with a dedication to opening people’s eyes to further possibilities and a sort of freedom, that Reed also exercises activism. When asked by Another Man Magazine if the title fits, Reed responded with “Oh for sure, 100 percent. It all comes back to sexuality and my personal experiences with bullying. I think those things will always come through in my work. There always has to be a message. I wouldn’t pretend that doing some crazy avant-garde outfit is going to change the world, but I like to think that it could start a conversation.”

With their androgynous looks and a 6’ 8” stature, Reed has captured the attention of both the fashion community and hard-to-please members of the millennial and Gen-Z crowd. Rightly so, it was a no brainer to ask Reed to put together a fashion diary, exclusively for L’Officiel USA 's first-ever digital issue.

Day 1 

For me the “color” white, when speaking about clothing, is extremely powerful, the energy it provides and the blankness—like a canvas—it creates the illusion that anything is possible: Just go ahead and start painting who you are or what you want to say to the world on me! The first-ever piece or, I should say, pieces I created were all white. The first look I did for Harry Styles’s tour had off-white silks pouring and billowing out everywhere. I feel most powerful—invincible, even—when I’m in an all-white look, like a light you wouldn’t dare try to put out. No matter what people yell in the streets or try to say or do, my light will not stop shining.

Day 2 

Pretty in Pink!

I wore this outfit on a family road trip to the mountains in California, right outside of L.A. The second we arrived it started to snow, plus it was below freezing. I remember having to cling to every car and tree branch trying so hard not slip on all the ice and snow as I walked up a hill in my black vintage platforms and pink silk ensemble… Again ended up being a fabulous memory and I definitely put some smiles on the faces of people passing by, all 6-foot, 9-inches of me in those boots, in head-to-toe pink, with a gold space hat, sliding!

Day 3

 

Oh, I remember this day so well! I was in Milan for work and I was looking at the road outside the hotel I was staying in: it was all cobblestones and it was raining and everyone was dressed in black and grey. I just remember thinking there’s no better way to make a statement then by wearing a head-to-toe vintage cheetah print suit that once belonged to Debbie Harry, with some massive silver platforms… I fell after 30 seconds of walking and I did it over and over again. You know what though, I never felt stronger. And thank god for the Italian men who kept running to my rescue.

Day 4

 

This is my “Little Red Riding Hood who stole all of her grandmother’s jewels and moved to Paris” ensemble. But on a serious note, I have always loved the power clothing has to transform an individual into the person they know deep down they can be and, to me, same goes for the power colors have over one’s outlook. There is no color that is more lustful, intense, and statement-making than red. I always wear this cape when I am feeling a bit down, or under the weather. It puts me in a vibrant mood the second I put it on and truly changes the chemistry of how I feel.

Day 5

Bianca Jagger meets Harris, somewhere on a Roman holiday. I always feel so confident while wearing this look. I have three white suits, but this one is so special and the hot pink blouse was from a sale in LA. I found it in a big bin of fantastic 70’s glam-rock pussy bow blouses and silver lamé dresses—it doesn’t get any better. This outfit always makes me feel like I’m radiating to the world “THIS IS WHO I AM AND THIS IS HOW I AM SUPPOSED TO BE!” This look definitely pushes me to keep developing my style and push the boundaries of identity. I feel so invincible in this look that is really made me not care if people think I a girl, boy, in-between, love, hate, admiration or disdain, I am me and this is who I am!

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