What I like most about this shot is the look of WAT the MUA or assistant in the background is giving Flashie’s posing. HA!
More from that Stella show. You know, I always really WANT to like Stella, because I respect her attitude to vegan fashion and how uncompromising she is about her values as they relate to her label. Also she has a great collection of fashion muses and friends and I think we ALL love the elite clique that seems to have crystallized around her label. BUT, truth time, sometimes the clothes are butt-fucking ugly. Like, so bad. She seems to have a real thing for jumpsuits, which are just….SO unflattering, on the vast majority of women. Occasionally there’s things like the illusion-netting, sculpted silhouette black dress seen first on Kate Winslet (for memory), but more often there’s, like, a pair of really boxy Bermuda shorts and an awkward cocoon jacket. So I get disappointed and set aside my fan-girling for the day and just concentrate on the gorgeous Stella fragrance line.
All of this was a very long way of saying, this collection is amazing! Lacy but not sheer, feminine but not coy, graceful but still powerful. Fantastic.
This is a nice alternative to the other shorts-length we’ve seen this season (the midi) - the always-current mini. Again, as in Alexander Wang’s latest for Balenciaga, a riff on the peplum - here two symmetrical folds that reference both scrollwork and the mullet-hem.
PS - hate the shoes.
Oh fucking come on. This is a shredded jersey tshirt and some sort of straw jellyfish/seaweed on the head. Now really. This is what I was just talking about. I see no need to hand out plaudits and talk about how “monumental” this look is, just because it’s Junya Watanabe.
Come on Junya, you can do better.
PS please look at how not into it the model is. Lolz!
Well, this is embarrassing. Is anyone else getting shades of Givenchy F/W 13 from this Jean Paul Gaultier show, or is it just me? See specifically this look and maybe this. Maybe it’s just in my nature to see references and visual canon, as an art historian by (very long) training, but I feel like I’ve spied with my little eye just a few too many really clunky borrowed ideas this season, and at labels where that really shouldn’t be happening. Like since when did JPG have to rip off other designers, and looks from only last season, no less? I thought he kind of had his own thing going. A witty reference or a wink to the fashion insiders is one thing, but if this were an essay I were marking (so to speak), I’d call it plagiarism.
What an awkwardly derivative, and utterly dull fashion season this has been so far :( I realise we’re still waiting on arguably some of the biggest players - Chanel, Saint Laurent, Givenchy and McQueen - but this season felt as flat as an ironing board to me. There have been some excellent shows - for example Alexander Wang, Victoria Beckham, Mary Katrantzou, Dolce & Gabbana, Balenciaga, and standout Rick Owens, but overall it’s been a bit of a month-long snore. I might do a wrap-up post this year, as it’ll probably be short and won’t take me too long. HA!
I was all ready to shit on this and the other hypercolour looks from the Yohji Yamamoto show for being fucking stupid, but then I realised the shape of that top at the bottom there is gorgeous. A little like a Tudor bodice, or maybe, combined with the stiff, sheer chiffon material, like a toile or Victorian stays. 10/10.
NB - A note on “conceptual” labels like Yohji Yamamoto, Commes des Garcons, Gareth Pugh and Maison Martin Margiela:
Previously when I’ve written some rude comment under a daft Pugh hat or Margiela face-covering, I’ve had some notes which made it clear that people think I don’t like these looks because they’re too haute, too avant-garde, too conceptual for little old me. PLEASE. This is not a personal style blog, so I don’t bring my own look into it too often (though very early in this blog’s history I did post pics of a few of my most treasured fashion items, hence the “trophy piece” element of the name), but I vacillate between dressing in all-black or grey, and dressing like a neon clown. Like, my little sister’s boyfriend from Glasgow, prior to him moving out here, already knew there was a YTP-I’ve got a silly new pair of leggings-dance. I actually do get what I’m looking at with these designers - I get the purpose, I get the references, I get the presentation - but sometimes, I still just plain don’t like it. Just because a designer is very sculptural and conceptual and other such noise, doesn’t mean you have to actually like every stupid piece of crap they send down the runway. Similarly, I’m a massive Katrantzou/Proenza Schouler/Balenciaga fangirl, but I don’t actually like every look from every show every season. You don’t have to like something because it’s put in front of you. It’s called critical thought, you guys.
Um, what? A Maison Martin Margiela show I don’t instantly roll my eyes clean out of head at? A Maison Martin Margiela show where the models’ faces aren’t obscured in some way? A Maison Martin Margiela show where the outfits don’t feature ten tonnes of pointless “found” crap artlessly stapled onto the bodice?
I mean, it does look like Julia here is wearing the suit backwards, but still.
WHAT IS THIS MADNESS??
And my girl Catherine working that great swagger for Marant.
Here’s an idea you can take to your own wardrobe: oversized men’s blazer or tuxedo jacket (if you don’t already own one, I’m sure in maybe 3 months’ time Zara, H&M or Topshop will be more than happy to furnish you with one)(although currently Zara is busy with an AMAZING 90s CK/2013 Givenchy minimalist grunge look which I JUST FUCKING LOVE, never stop, Zara) with a kicky black skirt and a high-necked crew. Don’t forget to add the pushed-up sleeves for that ineffably chic French touch. How simple is that? No wardrobe makeover necessary but you’ll feel fresh.
I always enjoy looking at the Isabel Marant collection, because while the other shows tend to be more of an intellectual exercise, looking at these is like sneaking a peek at what you’ll be wearing for the next year. Not that we’re all walking around in Marant (I wish)(although you lucky bastards in countries that have H&M will be smugly strutting around in her diffusion line real soon, damn you), but rather this is the sort of label whose ideas actually filter down into the clothes the rest of us wear (see also: patterned jeans, platform sneakers).
Here’s a few of the girls waiting around outside (?) the Dior show - I’ve chosen this shot because it shows a couple of the different threads of Simons’ latest showing for the label, and I want to consider these various themes together.
I think the different look stories hang together reasonably well, but some parts of the show were much, much stronger than others. First up, girls in these sleek tops and floral shorts thing (if you look closely, you can see that what looks like the yoke of a skirt is actually sort of briefs, with that pleated floral material hanging down like a long hem), then a selection of more piecey, slightly sculpted separates in a variety of pastels, including the sort of pilot’s jacket seen above, then blossoming into some black cocktails dresses, then blooming into midi-length brocade or jacquard gowns and some sleek evening suits.
I think the first and last sections (or look stories) are the best executed. By far the least terrible looks Simons has sent out at each Dior show so far have been these big lantern-shaped dresses, seen in different fabrications each season. The gowns from this show are quite lovely, and will accordingly be seen on plenty of red carpets coming up (look for them on Jennifer Lawrence, I’d guess). The fabric is interesting - a sort of scribbly, modern Charles Rennie-Mackintosh-inspired floral which rewards close inspection, and becomes more thoughtful with more attention. It’ll look good in pap shots of, for example, the Oscars red carpet, but shows up nicely in close-ups of the fabric itself. The suits too from this section of the show are gorgeous - next I’ll post one on Sasha Luss, and here the sleekness echoes for me the classic YSL Le Smoking, which is an acceptably classic reference for Simons to make, albeit from another label.
The shorts-suits seen above are a bit peculiar but I think the overall effect is quite nice - it’s a good compromise on the wide-legged short pants we’re seeing everywhere this season (see my previous posts on them here and here). I do think Wang’s for Balenciaga were better, but these are reasonable.
In the middle of the show is where Simons lost his way, and did (I feel) nothing to advance either his own aesthetic or his interpretation of Dior’s codes. I literally counted FORTY looks in the middle of the show that I feel we could have done without. I’ve opined at length before on the unnecessary length of shows these days - with particular reference to Karl Lagerfeld’s S/S and FW shows for Chanel - and I stand by what I’ve said. Considering how many shows and collections major labels such as Dior now put out (S/S, Pre-Fall, F/W, Couture, Cruise, and any diffusion or collab lines besides) I feel this many looks at any one show is at best superfluous, and at worst, dilutes the quality of the show. I would much rather see a tightly-edited display of maybe 20 very carefully considered looks than the staggering 80+ random thoughts Lagerfeld regularly sends down a runway, and the 76 Simons has given us here.
In the middle of the show, we have a number of unresolved thoughts - billowing silk separates in lemony brights, looping cocktail gowns, a quick foray into finely-striped shantung silk which I believe fell of the back of the truck after this Armani show, a whole lot of very poorly-executed jackets, and a few mixed-print frocks which could have been very interesting, given the room to speak on their own. To my mind, Simons should have cut everything form the middle of the show except for these latter looks, and produced a much better collection with a stronger identity.
As to the Dior-ness of the show, well, I continue to lament that while I don’t expect New Look every bloody time, I don’t think it would kill Simons to occasionally live up to the standard set By Monsieur Dior himself in terms of thoughtfulness, grace and wearability. Come on now.