De Pino Is the French Label Bringing 2010s Nostalgia to Haute Couture

During Paris Couture Week this past June, there was only one place you’d see references to Lady Gaga, the late, and Nicolas Ghesquière’s designs during his 2000s tenure as Balenciaga’s designer. That place was rising label De Pino’s runway debut. French designer Gabriel Figueiredo set his very first show in a strictly high fashion environment (Paris, during the haute couture runway shows, spearheaded by all the usual suspects: Dior, Chanel, Schiaparelli, etc.). But against a sea of presentations on the official calendar, De Pino brought something very different to the table.

“I was inspired by memories I had from the late 2000s, when I started to get interested in fashion and to study fashion, and I wanted to pay tribute to those shows that gave me the will to follow this path,” Figueiredo, who was born outside of Paris and is of Portuguese descent, tells W. In particular, he looked to Ghesquière, Margiela, and Prada. “I also worked with the shapes and the volumes, thinking of how memory can change proportions, details. How it can exaggerate some stuff and hide some other stuff.” Mid aughts Tumblr culture was another source of inspiration for Figueiredo’s fall 2024 collection. One only had to look at the hairstyles the models wore during the runway show to get that reference—chunky, sculptural bangs that obscured the eyes, reminiscent of early Gaga or Sia.

A look from De Pino’s fall 2024 runway show in Paris.

Courtesy of De Pino

Figueiredo is a new name in fashion; he launched De Pino in 2020. But the designer has been in the industry for years, having graduated from the Brussels visual arts school, La Cambre, with a master’s degree in fashion design in 2017, then working with stylists like Camille Bidault Waddington and Georgia Pendlebury. His looks have been worn by Hailey Bieber (who donned a De Pino bag to Coachella in 2022), Caroline Polachek, and the French musician Christine and the Queens. The 34-year-old has also done embroidery work at Maison Margiela since 2019, while simultaneously developing his namesake brand.

depino ss25 runway look

For fall 2024, Figueiredo created cocoon coats that were puffed up like marshmallows, and sweaters that came with oversize turtleneck collars. Pieces of embroidered vinyl were gathered into surreal flowers pinned on dresses and skirts (his mother, along with several other friends, lent a hand on the embroidery). Some looks called to Figueiredo’s favorite mid 2000s Prada shows—which he saw on back in the day. “There’s definitely a childish vision of fashion,” he says of his aesthetic. “It’s a mix between these really extreme sophistications, but also something childlike and fun.”

depino ss25 runway look

Looking at Figueiredo’s work, it’s easy to see the fantasy. The designer uses couture techniques on pumped-up, cartoon-like silhouettes. (The final look for fall 2024? A cascading white gown made of the insulation found in most puffer jackets.) But his mission goes deeper than simply providing a youthful perspective to the old school—which he does, in spades. Most of the material the designer used in his fall 2024 collection was upcycled, providing a refreshing kind of experimentation one rarely encounters in the world of couture. “I think there is a lot of humanity in couture,” Figueiredo adds. “It’s based on craft and civil affairs. And it’s about who’s making the garments.”

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