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On April 3 in Las Vegas, the 64th annual Grammy Awards ceremony was held at the MGM Grand Garden Arena. There, Grey Goose commemorated its first-time attendance by collaborating with the fashion designer Peter Dundas of DUNDAS to create a bespoke martini-shaped bag, unveiled at the hands of Paris Hilton on the red carpet.
The sparkling accessory took over a month to realize, embellished with 3,404 Swarovski crystals—all set by hand in a majestic blue ombré sequence. Drawing inspiration from the iconic Grey Goose frosted glass bottle, Dundas also placed three flying geese on the bag’s handle as a nod to the brand’s history. Effortlessly, the custom creation echoes the classic and timeless nature of a martini. Immediately following the collaboration, Dundas minted the one-of-a-kind bag into his first NFT, created in collaboration with a new sustainably-conscious fashion metaverse platform named DressX.
To hear how the designer created this iconic martini moment, and why his latest activation and fashion show were held in the metaverse, Whitewall spoke with Dundas.
WHITEWALL: What was the process like when creating your bespoke martini-shaped bag, in collaboration with Grey Goose, featuring 3,404 Swarovski crystals?
PETER DUNDAS: I approached the bag from a point of view of trying quite simply to create something that symbolized the martini cocktail, which is my social drink of choice. I wanted to use some elements of Grey Goose’s DNA and most importantly make it feel like a bag that a DUNDAS girl would like to wear. Creating a bag in the shape of an actual glass was a fun interpretation that included everything I wanted to express with it. Marina Raphael of Swarovski, a dear friend, kindly helped me realize the piece. She is an established bag designer in her own right and we worked together on figuring out how to solve the technical issues creating the shape and the ombre effect of the crystals. The silver goose charms on the chain handle were handcrafted in Italy and came as the last touch.
WW: Following the bag's debut, it was minted into an NFT, created in collaboration with Grey Goose and DressX, as was "MUSIC AWARDS" Fashion Wearables. Why did you want to explore the metaverse?
PD: DUNDAS has always strived to disrupt the fashion system, particularly in ways that create and evolve experiences for our clients and community. We are lucky enough to have many friends in the tech world and it was actually my partner and cofounder Evangelo Bousis’ brother who introduced us to the idea of doing NFTs of my designs more than two years ago. NFTs are an amazing new proposal for our client base and a great entry into a part of our world that might have been unavailable to them until now. I am really excited to be doing it with DressX because I have a long relationship with the founders and with our joint background in fashion, we understand each other which makes the result, the NFT even better. I was also really excited to do our first Metaverse fashion show along with our first pop-up store in the Metaverse. It felt like stepping into the future and we linked it with our physical store so there was a trait d’union, a connection, with the fashion experience as we know it today, which I think is important in understanding such a new platform.
WW: How do you feel your work translates from physical fabrics and full looks to the digital space?
PD: Translating my work from the physical world to the web took a lot of work on my side and I am happy to say that. I think that the creative input and contribution is an important part of making it successful and it then becomes a different, exciting medium the same way pen and paper were for illustrations or fabric and thread are for a physical garment. The knowledge, judgment, and experience of a designer felt as important to ensure that the proposal felt as entirely DUNDAS as making a physical collection or a physical fashion show.
WW: You've dressed some of the music industry's biggest stars over the years, and this year dressed H.E.R. for the Grammys. Can you tell us about her look?
PD: H.E.R. is an amazing artist and she—along with her team with her stylist, Wouri Vice—and I share a common love of the 1970s. For her performance at the Grammys, we wanted something with that '70s rock and roll flavor but in a modern interpretation, so I created a motorcycle jacket with bell-bottomed biker trousers over an ombre dyed blouse. The look was entirely embellished in my perspex mirror embroidery in a purple camo pattern which made it new and different from any design of the actual period.
WW: How would you describe your personal relationship to style?
PD: I think that style is about communicating how you want to be perceived. Some people use it to show they are different while others want to show that they belong. My approach to style is to express individuality and ultimately I think a successful design is also about giving confidence to the man or woman wearing anything you make.
WW: You recently presented your first show in the Metaverse. Tell us more about how it went.
PD: Our metaverse show closing the Metaverse Fashion Week was an amazing first venture into this medium. I approached it as I do every show. Editing my designs with my stylist collaborator and creating music that felt right in this medium was not different from any show I do. Collaborating with the avatar designers was a new and exciting challenge but this could only be expected as it was a first and I was really happy with the result. The avatar models looked and felt like true DUNDAS girls.
WW: Did isolating amid the pandemic impact your view of fashion? How so?
PD: I think it would be delusional to think that we are the same as before going into the pandemic two years ago, but I really think that we as a brand came out better. We never stopped creating during the time and the shift in the market forced us to distill who we are, our messaging, and our approach to the retail experience. The world became so much more consumer-centric and as a designer, it was a renewed course in adjusting my collections to what my girls needed which is very healthy. Perfecting or at least attempting to perfect the online business in quality, ease and experience are increasingly imperative and we have come out of it understanding our client's needs and expectations better; also in design.
WW: What are you working on next?
PD: We are currently working on a plan that will take our brand to the next level both in category expansion and in our presence as a brand. I think that it is a very exciting moment to be a young name in fashion because we have a voice that is so much stronger than it was pre-pandemic when the world was attuned to traditional ways of creating brand awareness. I am very excited to share the next steps in the coming months.