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When I first started exploring the world of lingerie beyond what was on the high-street, there were three names that seemed to me to be the epitome of luxury lingerie – Agent Provocateur, La Perla, and Myla. That was a little over a decade ago, and since then Agent Provocateur went into administration, La Perla began struggling, and Myla appeared to close altogether.
But it’s back! After more than a year of radio silence on social media and no new product releases, the brand has deleted everything and announced an “all new Myla, coming soon”. Though their website is currently just a holding page where you can sign up to their newsletter, due to launch properly later this month, most of the new AW18 collection is already available to buy at Selfridges. It’s also set to be sold at Net-a-Porter and Bergdorf Goodman.
Myla’s not just getting a new website, it has a new team behind it too. It’s now owned by Gary Hogarth, who was CEO at Agent Provocateur from 2000 to 2016. And the new creative director is Gregor Pirouzi, who has designed for brands including Versace and Vivienne Westwood.
Thinking back to my perception of Myla over the years, they always seemed like a blend of timeless classics and more creative pieces. There were plenty of luxurious-but-unadventurous basques, camisoles and suspender sets in silk and beautiful lace. But this was also the first brand I remember seeing knickers from that came with an attached choker/harness. They were doing strappy lingerie before it was the standard thing, and I will forever regret not buying the unique Verna set in bold red. They even once made knickers with a massive pouf of feathers on the rear!
So I’m sad to say that, to me, this new collection feels a bit bland. Speaking about the Myla relaunch, Hogarth has been quoted as saying “women buying high-end lingerie want something different”, and I just don’t see much that’s truly different here.
Granted, Myla was always know for its decadent fabrics and there are a number here that stand out – the bright blue embroidery of the Columbia Road set* and the geometric lace of the Rosemoor pieces* are particularly gorgeous. But they’re not enough to make me love this collection as a whole.
I do like the Soho crop-style bra* featured at the top of this post, that feels very ‘now’. The sleek satin Covent Garden bralette sets* with high-waist bottoms too. But then there are things like the sheer white mesh Duchy Street set* which just doesn’t look luxurious at all. The Chelsea Grove bodysuit* doesn’t seem especially high-end either, and I’ve seen similar designs a dozen times before. As for the rest of it, it’s nice enough, but it doesn’t kill me.
Overall, I’m disappointed. Fabrics aside, there’s nothing particularly unique or eye-catching to get excited about. I was thrilled when I heard one of my all-time ‘greats’ Myla was making a comeback, but there’s not much here I could see myself buying (or dreaming of buying). The blue Columbia Road above excepted, that one’s very lovely.
I was hoping for a bunch of real stand-out pieces to fall in love with, but this ‘debut’ collection feels like they’re playing it very safe. Much more emphasis on the timeless classics, very little on creativity. Sure, they’ve managed to get some great stockists, but is that down to the designs themselves or just the influence the Myla brand name still holds?
If Myla doesn’t differentiate itself, and I’m not sure it currently is, there’s a chance this revival could be short-lived. SS19 will see swimwear and accessories added to the main line; I hope it also brings back more of that fun, playful spark that first drew me to the brand. Keep up with the beautiful laces and embroideries Myla, but more bold colours and interesting shapes too please!
What do you think of Myla’s comeback collection? Do you agree that it’s a bit boring, or do you in fact love it? Let me know in the comments below!