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When Glenn Martens teased his latest Y/Project collection on Instagram with a totally rude accessory, a gigantic middle finger earring, I knew we were in for a treat.

Naturally, Martens delivered. Y/Project has never been for the faint of heart, but the French label’s Spring/Summer 2023 collection is especially bold.

The flippin’ fabulous earring (the rude gesture is also woven into sweaters) isn’t the only thing to love. There was lots of denim, cut and sewn into seemingly impossible garments: skirts with waistbands that curve away from the body instead of cleaving to it, extra-high boots that creep up to the crotch, a gown made from panels of frayed jeans.

Typical of Martens’ work, nearly every piece merits a double take. Tank tops boast wired straps so thin they seemed invisible. A leather jacket made of panels appears to snap together. A choker of enamel roses is so large, it looks more like a neck brace than a piece of jewelry. Everything deserves careful consideration.

Speaking of double takes, Y/Project reprised its partnership with Jean Paul Gaultier, the king of trompe l’oeil. For part two, the duo delivers more visually tricky masterpieces: a turtleneck printed with texture of an argyle knit sweater, a maxi skirt printed with a pair of pants, a tank top printed with a lace-trimmed camisole.

Y/Project x Melissa also makes a comeback, this time in the form of plastic, pointy-toed boots that the footwear brand says are “coming soon.”

In the visual-first economy of social media, Martens’ mind-bending designs are eye candy so delicious, they can flip us off whenever they please.


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