10 / 28

On the right, a knitted mannequin wearing a knitted outfit, also by Figus. On the left, a small slice of the sprawling Bernhard Willhelm archive in the museum’s possession, which formed the basis of its 2007 retrospective on the designer. “Willhelm donates every season,” says Mertens. “In the beginning he gave his complete collection of both men’s and women’s — like 40 silhouettes — but now Kaat [Debo, the museum’s director] makes the selections. I think we have the biggest Willhelm collection in the world. It’s immense.”