Friday Fierceness!

The Hello Kitty in My Closet- Vogue Japan December 2014

Sweater, skirt, boots: Balenciaga. Image VOGUE JAPAN

Model: Ai Tominaga
Photographer: Tibi Clenci
Stylist: Mayumi Makamura
Hair: Chinatsu Nobe
Makeup: Mariko Tagayashi

P.S. I’ve decided to share my Halloween costume (and the makeup tutorial I’m using) with all of you- I’m going as Maleficent! Hope you all have a safe Halloween!

-Ana

Valentino S/s 2015

Valentino S/s 2015. Image NOWFASHION

Ahhh Valentio…. another collection that had marine life as a main inspiration! For Spring 2015 Pierpaolo Piccioli and Maria Grazia Chiuri took us on a grand tour of the 18th- century Italian coastline which was very much in keeping with their sumptuous bohemian aesthetic. True to form, the duo’s love of their home country was apparent in this collection and Spring 2015’s offering is especially poetic in it’s romantic Italianate details.

Valentino S/s 2015. Image NOWFASHION

The Grand Tour is a particularly lovely theme which sadly, is an idea that lives mostly in our minds these days. It’s an old, primarily British custom dating back to the Victorian era, where wealthy young men took a year-long sightseeing journey through Europe after their studies come to an end. Show notes explained the concept as “…an educational trip taken by cultured young Europeans to explore the art, philosophy and traditions of Italy…” but to attempt to condense the whole gamut of Italian art, culture and imagery into a single showing would be an impossible (and disrespectful) task. Therefore, it was a smart move on the designers’ part to pick their favourite facets of Italian life and transfer them into their collection. Thus, we saw hints of Venice, Rome and Naples throughout the showing, along with as all the coastal references.

Valentino S/s 2015. Image NOWFASHION

There were 79 looks in the Spring 2015 Valentino show and I’m pretty certain that had they been left to their own devices, Mr. Piccioli and Ms. Chiuri would have sent out even more outfits down the catwalk! Still, this huge collection shows that even in this very condensed version, Italy is a wide ranging and inspiration dense place. The duo touched on on many of Italy’s highlights- from its antiquities all the way down to its kitsch- and along the way, created a compilation of fancy-trek perfect apparel that’s fit for even the most glamorous of journeys.

Valentino S/s 2015. Image NOWFASHION

Think patterned pinafore dresses with slashed bodices, ribbed lace sweaters, button- front shirts, jackets with bracelet sleeves, ruffled mini dresses, patterned mini short suit sets, bib blouses, wide-leg trousers, car coats, culottes, strappy gladiator sandals, slouchy rectangular totes, and aviator shades. They’re all gorgeous!

Valentino S/s 2015. Image NOWFASHION

Then there was the evening wear segment…FABULOUS!

Here we saw some gorgeous floor- length gowns reminiscent of this year’s Fall couture show. Silhouettes were clean and body-skimming, but there were sexy touches to be seen amongst all the looks. Shown were some sultry halter numbers with necklines plunging past the waist, sheer fabrics were used to excess and in many cases trompe d’œil ornamentation was the only thing preserving the models’ modesty. Here is where the seaside references were most apparent, with the designers using couture embellishments to covey their theme. Thus, there were gowns printed with bold starfish and snails, others were embroidered with beaded shells, ships, and underwater creatures… some were covered in trailing appliqués and some had graphic panels of opaque fabric overlaying silky net in precise patterns. Each and every piece was an advertisement of the adroitness and craftsmanship of those working in Valentino’s ateliers

Valentino S/s 2015. Image NOWFASHION

Just as they have in previous seasons, the house’s head designers did what they do best: they created exceptional, couture level clothing in a ready-to-wear setting. Expert craftsmanship could be seen at every turn and I love that the ornamentation seen throughout the collection- from the precise cutouts, lace insets, broderie anglaise, lace appliqués, embroidery and flowing prints seen in the daywear, to all of the shimmering evening wear decorations- was executed with the utmost attention to detail.

Valentino S/s 2015. Image NOWFASHION

The colour palette of this offering was as wide ranging as the clothing itself, with shades flowing from delicate and illusory to bold and bright. Blush pink, ice blue, khaki, cream, cinnamon, lavender, emerald green, garnet red, navy blue, black and a rainbow of candy pastels…the list goes on.

Valentino S/s 2015. Image NOWFASHION

Prints were also major part of this collection and they too covered a wide scope of impact, with motifs ranging from vivid and graphic to sheer and whisper-soft. Pastel Neapolitan stripes, bold scarf prints, vivid architectural swirls, trailing underwater vines and floral prints were all included. Valentino’s vintage coral print was seen here as well, as were large, singly- printed, pop art images of underwater creatures.

Visually, it was intense, but it all worked.

Valentino S/s 2015. Image NOWFASHION

Valentino’s design duo have been persistent and unvarying in their alluring and distinguished looks season after season, and this showing was right in line with all they’ve done thus far. They have seamlessly interpreted the brand’s signatures, while simultaneously establishing their own point of view.

Valentino S/s 2015. Image NOWFASHION

Mr. Piccioli and Ms. Chiuri have produced an undeniably beautiful Valentino collection for Spring 2015. It’s sure to please the brand’s longstanding fans, and is certain to attract even more! It’s colours and glam, carefree air will certainly be irresistible bait to the younger fashion set and I am thoroughly in love (although I’ve been enamored for years).

I can’t wait to see what next season brings!

– Ana

Chanel S/s 015

Chanel S/s 2015. Image WWD

You can never accuse Karl Lagerfeld of being boring. Every season, without fail, he has consistently produced stunning runways shows that are as dazzling in their production value as they are in substance, and Spring 2015 was no exclusion. This season’s showing took place on Boulevard Chanel: a recreated version of a genuine Parisian street, paved with puddle-specked (real puddles!) asphalt and bordered by houses with glass windows and flower boxes. It was pretty realistic down to the smallest detail. Stunning, but all of these effects faded into the background once the models took the stage.

Chanel S/s 2015. Image WWD

They came in groups: starting with an original crowd of twenty-five girls that sent photographers crazy. Before thinning out into smaller sets of two and three, the models sauntered down the runway chatting amongst themselves, a few carrying mini boomboxes within their chic little handbags. The music from stereos was the only noise to be heard in the silence of the Grand Palais, their tinny sound piercing the quiet before the main soundtrack took over. Whitney Houston’s “I’m Every Woman” was heard, and in many ways it’s an appropriate theme song form Chanel’s Spring 2015 collection.

Chanel S/s 2015. Image WWD

Kaiser Lagerfeld went the liberated route this season with loosely-tailored, comfortable silhouettes, multi- functional accessories and liberating, easy to wear footwear (I like these, thought I’m more of a skyscraper heels girl) being big features in the runway lineup. The collection is all about female empowerment, and the incredible strength and influence women wield when they work together, hence the runway was full of looks that are perfect for any woman’s “Power Dressing” wardrobe.

Chanel S/s 2015. Image WWD

This collection was all about individuality and self expression, and as such there was something for everyone in the runway lineup: wide- legged trousers, loose tunics, printed jackets, button- front shirts, military coats, pinstriped shorts, knitted vests, ruffled blouses, sweaters, outsize striped cardigans, capes and knee- length skirts. There were also some lovely dresses and fabulous tailored looks in layered pinstripe. Signature Chanel favourites were spotted in an array of tweed suits, pearls and double- breasted shearling jackets, as were some concrete- embellished pieces that harkened back to this year’s Fall couture show.

There’s a lot of room to mix and match, and there are some stunning pieces- particularly those embellished dresses and some little double-breasted shearing jackets seen toward the end of the show.

Chanel S/s 2015. Image WWD

Accessories were whimsical: shoulder bags were crafted to look like vintage Chanel sweaters- the sleeves forming the strap, there were distressed messenger bags and carry-alls, large envelope clutches, and chain strapped clutches printed with slogans like “Féministe mais Feminine” and “Votez Coco” or crafted around those tiny radios. As playful as these bags were, the footwear was extremely practical: flat boots, ankle loafers and a whole array of menswear- inspired sandals and dress shoes were seen throughout the show.

Chanel S/s 2015. Image WWD

This is a season for prints and Mr. Lagerfeld went for ones that packed lots of punch! From the bright paint splattered polka dot motif and the psychedelic swirled abstract pattern seen at the beginning of the show, to the glossy lacquered pinstripes that closed it, this collection was chock- full of eye catching details. Classic tweed was given a graphic update in black and white or was spliced by multi-coloured threads resembling a soft hazy rainbow. There were tartan and striped knits, iridescent watercolour overlays, 3-Dimensional appliqués, graphic monochromatic stripes, geometric patterns and brightly- coloured linings. There were the painted leather pieces that mimic-ed the look of cobblestone streets- complete with with tufts of fabric grass and beaded flowers growing in between the cracks, there were concrete tiles fitted together like paving stones and an iridescent block print on sheer silk net that resembled brick mortar work.

Chanel S/s 2015. Image WWD

The bold effects were grounded by a base palette of black, white, grey, navy blue and sober grey-toned pastels. I like the use of grey as a base colour in this collection, it’s a refreshing palette cleanser and was a good way to tie the garments into the setting of the whole event.

Chanel S/s 2015. Image WWD

As I said above, Mr. Lagerfeld chose to convey the idea of feminism and powerful women with this collection, while his central theme circled protests and demonstration- hence all the cobblestone imagery and grey colours, and why the models ‘took to the streets’ for the runway show. There was a sort of demonstration at the end of the show too, with models storming the stage chanting slogans and bearing placards emblazoned with “Make fashion not war” and “Tweed is better than tweet.”

Chanel S/s 2015. Image WWD

Admittedly I found this pretend protest to be a bit silly and from a feminist point of view, a bit tasteless, but truth be told, throughout his career and in his own way, Karl Lagerfeld has been advocating women’s rights by creating empowering, boundary pushing clothing that stylishly empower us as we take on the world. Additionally the looks in this collection did have something of a feminist, Chanel-for-all message running through them in their diversity and overall vision of inclusion. Coming from a house founded by one of the 20th century’s great feminists, this politically charged collection is really a continuation if the work started decades ago by the great Coco Chanel.

Chanel S/s 2015. Image WWD

Signature Chanel details are present throughout the show, particularly the ideal that clothes should be logical. Coco Chanel believed in creating garments that glorified function over form…or at least the ideal of combining both factors. She believed that women’s clothing should be stylish AND fully functional, hence pockets on the front of jackets, real buttonholes and handbags with easily- accessible compartments that kept your belongings organized and easy to find. In many ways her original designs were a form of protest against the impracticality of everyday fashion in the mid fifties – she loathed the corsets and petticoats of Dior’s New Look for instance, and following her 1954 comeback, railed against it wherever she could. Considering all this it’s easy to rationalize the slogan-detailed handbags, the comfortable shoes and practical accessories, and see why this collection was so relaxed in structure and form.

In the designer’s words it’s really “more mode de vie than mode.”

Chanel S/s 2015. Image WWD

The final banner of the show stated “The day of the woman is everyday at Chanel,” and in many ways, it’s a message that rings true: Chanel provides women with classic looks that are almost timeless in their fashionable appeal and quality. The garments are always practical and seamlessly multi- functional in their wear-ability. Most importantly, women feel beautiful and confident while wearing Chanel… and in the end, isn’t that the main function of fashion?

Chanel S/s 2015. Image WWD

The Chanel Spring 2015 show was an exuberant mix of practicality and whimsy. It was vibrant, playful and thought provoking and it was thoroughly fierce!

– Ana

Elie Saab S/s 2015

Elie Saab S/s 2015. Image INDIGITALIMAGES

Elie Saab’s Spring 2015 collection is named Dive Into the Deep Blue, and as that name suggests it’s full of stunning looks in gorgeous shades of deep ocean blue and the vivid colours of coral reefs.

The fauna and flora of the Italian sea was the main inspiration behind this collection- so it’s no surprise that the runway was full of fabulous marine accented looks. There were rippling gowns that undulated like deep sea waves, soft fabrics, heavy embellishments that resembled barnacles, lace inserts likened gills and sharp slits across the torso like gills.

Elie Saab S/s 2015. Image INDIGITALIMAGES

Like many designers this season Mr. Saab focused on the 1970s for inspiration (who wouldn’t be inspired by that time?) and premiered an offering that’s full of the glamorous and sophisticated looks associated with the high style period. However the vintage vibe was kept somewhat modern with with pared down silhouettes and sporty references that were seen throughout. Lines were kept clean and simple, the tailoring was razor-sharp and very sexy, ornamentation was minimal and the bodices of many of the dresses and gowns resembled vintage swimsuits.

Elie Saab S/s 2015. Image INDIGITALIMAGES

Colours were exceptionally calming with a main palette of deep blue, white, black and teal, but there were also refreshing shades of bright coral, orange and yellow added here and there. This is the first collection that Mr. Saab has worked so extensively with graphic prints and this season’s swirled abstract motif is definitely impressive. Left as is, or bordered by graphic bands of black and white, a fabulous selection of print dresses resembling patterned scarves started the show .

Elie Saab S/s 2015. Image INDIGITALIMAGES

From there the show progressed into elegant day wear options like structured mini dresses, sharp pantsuits, slouchy trousers and mini shorts, embellished blouses, sharply- tailored blazers, maxi dresses and lace-paneled blouses and trousers. These pieces are not casual in any sense of the word, but for this designer, who excels in delivering glamorous red-carpet worthy evening wear, it’s quite relaxed. Although not really appropriate for running errands and such- and apart from being haute work wear, they’re perfect for most daytime events like casual luncheons, garden parties, regattas and even less formal weddings.

Elie Saab S/s 2015. Image INDIGITALIMAGES

Fabulous as these daytime separates were, Mr. Saab’s best work was seen (as usual) in his selection of evening looks. Rather than relying solely on his signature ornamentation, the designer employed contrasting fabric textures and colour effects as his major embellishment details for Spring 2015; thus the evening wear potion of the show was kicked off by a series of bright gradient- coloured goddess gowns. From there the looks became progressively more glamourous: embellished lace pantsuits, sequined mini dresses, sheaf dresses with rippling trains and lushly- ornamented mermaid gowns. Fab.

Elie Saab S/s 2015. Image INDIGITALIMAGES

The marine influence was shown strongest in this section of the show, with the heavier embellishments deeply referencing underwater imagery- the ombré effect on the first gowns conveyed the thought of the fabric being dipped in water. Heavy fabrics bisected by frothy lace panels evoked the idea of seafoam on waves, gradient panels of lace and net likened seaweed and marine plants, beaded appliqués on sheer fabric looked like rippling water, billowing silk scarves and chiffon sleeves moved like gentle sea breezes and glistening sequined surfaces resembled the skin of some almost mythical translucent underwater creature.

Let’s just say that this entire segment of the show was utterly fabulous.

Elie Saab S/s 2015. Image INDIGITALIMAGES

Elie Saab Spring 2015 was a wonderful show from start to finish. The event itself was imbued with the calming ebb and flow of the ocean, and every aspect- from the production effects to model casting and runway styling was spot on in conveying the relaxed mood of the collection. Then there were the clothes (just gorgeous!). This season sparked a new look for Mr. Saab: a less formal, though equally glamorous one. Although I am completely enamored with his traditionally glamorous offerings, I find this new pared- back aesthetic very refreshing.

Elie Saab S/s 2015. Image INDIGITALIMAGES

The Elie Saab S/s 2015 collection’s relaxing inspiration has resulted in a collection of fabulous garments that can be worn to almost any event from day to evening. There’s plenty of room to mix and match and there are complete ensembles that can comfortably be worn straight off the runway. It’s a great development for a brand that had been struggling to make it’s prêt-à-porter line become more widely known. I can’t wait to see more!

Elie Saab Spring 2015 is nautical daywear at it’s best!

– Ana

Oscar de la Renta has passed away

Oscar de la Renta photographed for the Koket design blog. Image KOKET

Oscar de la Renta, the prolific Dominican- American designer, has passed away at the age of 82. I’ve been in mourning since.

The exact cause of death is not yet known, but Señor de la Renta had been battling cancer since 2006. This sad news comes just a week after the designer had appointed Peter Copping as the creative director of his eponymous brand.

Classic Oscar: clockwise from top: Benetta Barzini (far left, far right) and Jane Darby (centre) by Irving Penn for 1977 editions of Vogue, Bettina Lauer by Irving Penn for a 1965 edition of Vogue, Marisa Mell by Bert Stern for Vogue 1967 and Wilhelmina Cooper by Irving Penn for Vogue 1965. Image VOGUE

In a career that spanned over 50 years, Señor de la Renta dressed the world’s important women from almost every major field- royalty, first ladies, politicians, socialites, film stars… the designer dressed them all and became a fashion and style icon in his own right. His older work is treasured, while his more recent collections have become synonymous with an easygoing, glamorous past with their structural, feminine gowns and impeccable style.

More vintage Oscar: Angela Lindvall by Arthur Elgort for an early 90s edition of Vogue, Gail Hunnicut by Bert Stern for Vogue June 1968, Karen Graham in 1974. Image VOGUE/ARTHUR ELGORT/CORBIS/BERT STERN

The designer began his career in fashion at the age of 18 while studying art in Madrid. He was mentored by the legendary Cristóbal Balenciaga before starting work as a design assistant at Lanvin in Paris. He moved to New York in 1963, working for Elizabeth Arden’s made-to­-order clothing line in her Fifth Avenue boutique. Mr. De La Renta founded his own prêt-à-porter line in 1965, which has since grown into a multi- pronged $600 million per annul fashion and lifestyle business. As well as designing prêt-à-porter, bridal couture, furniture, custom fabrics and jewelry under his label, he has created collections for Lanvin and Balmain.

Oscar on the Red Carpet: (clockwise, from left) Amy Adams at the 2013 Academy Awards, Leighton Meester on the set of Gossip Girl in 2010, Emma Watson at the March 2014 NYC premiere of Noah, Jennifer Garner at the 2014 Academy Awards. Image GETTY IMAGES

Oscar de la Renta first made a name for himself in the early 1960s when he became the favourite designer of Jacqueline Kennedy, former US First Lady and world renowned socialite and style icon. Since then he has been a staunch favorite with the glamorous globetrotting crowd, with his designs having been worn by trendsetters and world figures including members of numerous noble houses, Audrey Hepburn, Hilary Clinton, Sarah Jessica Parker, Amy Adams and Sandra Bullock. Most recently he designed Amal Clooney’s (née Alamuddin) gorgeous wedding gown for her September 2014 wedding to George Clooney.

Oscar and friends: (clockwise, from left) with muse Nati Abascal in a 1960s photograph by Richard Avedon, with Diane von Fürstenberg at the 2014 Medal of Excellence Gala in New York, with Audrey Hepburn at a 1988 gala. Image VOGUE/RICHARD AVEDON/GETTY IMAGES/THE ASSOCIATED PRESS/CARNEGIE HALL

Señor de la Renta was has won a bevy of achievement awards during his career, including two Council of Fashion Designers (CFDA) Designer of the Year Awards, a CFDA Lifetime Achievement Award and two COTY Awards.

Graced with an indefatigable charm, the designer has always appreciated every moment of his high-profile life, saying to Gotham magazine, “A huge mistake we make is forgetting that one day we will die. We think that we are going to live forever. I always say life is a little like a garden. There is a time to plant, then a time you have to weed. Just think about people you’ve deeply cared for. And then think of the people you wish you’d spent more time with…I always say this: Live, love and laugh.”

Oscar de la Renta and Annette de la Renta at a 1991 state dinner at the White House. Image REUTERS/GREGG NEWTON

The designer is survived by his wife Annette and son, Moises, as well as stepchildren and step-grandchildren.

The fashion world has lost one of it’s brightest stars. Like millions of others, I grieve the passing of one of my favourite designers. It’s almost impossible to envision anyone working today who can match or emulate his incredible talent and impeccable style.

Oscar de la Renta with models Linda Evangelista and Yasmeen Ghauri at the end of his F/w 1991 collection at the Louvre in Paris. Image CORBIS

Rest in Peace Oscar de la Renta. Yours was a life well and completely lived. You will be greatly missed.

-Ana

Friday Fierceness!

Model Portfolio- Kandyse McClure

Sari: Model’s own, Accessories: Peter Elias. Image LAURA FERRIERA STUDIOS.

Model: Kandyse McClure
Photographer: Laura Ferreira
Stylist: Peter Elias:
Hair: Emily Quesnel
Makeup: Gianna Barcant

Manish Arora S/s 2015

Manish Arora S/s 2015. Image INDIGITALIMAGES

Overall gorgeous, the true beauty of Manish Arora’s designs can be found in his small details. His exquisite ornamentation is, truth be told, mainly what keeps me interested in his releases year after year.

That’s why it’s surprising to me that he was able to tone his embellishments down for Spring 2015 and release a collection that can really be viewed as prêt-à-porter rather than as couture by the average consumer. Don’t get me wrong- even this pared-down version of Mr. Arora’s aesthetic qualifies as maximalist by most standards, but this season marks the closest that the designer has come to doing entry-level retail. Not really off-the-rack, but it’s by no means a miss in style points!

Manish Arora S/s 2015. Image INDIGITALIMAGES

It’s very girly- think of the sweetest pastel images that you can imagine, add in a whole lot of Hindu religious motifs, florals, trompe-l’œil embellishments, grungy street-style cuts and psychedelic pop-art space prints à la Lisa Frank, and you get the gist of Manish Arora’s Spring 2015 vision.

Manish Arora S/s 2015. Image INDIGITALIMAGES

The showing was beautiful. The designer toned down his love of bold colours, opting instead for a pretty shade of palest pink, with a supporting palette in fondant hues of lavender, blue and scarab green, with Mr. Arora’s love of vibrancy showing through in the bright linings and iridescent embellishments. His signature runway styling was also boldly in play with bright adaptions of symbolic Indian makeup like Bindis (forehead dots) and Sindoor (coloured hair parting), though these were best viewed at the end of the show when the models removed their hats.

Manish Arora S/s 2015. Image INDIGITALIMAGES

His overall looks were toned down- prints were sheer and diaphanous instead of in your face, swashes of chiffon and iridescent fabric were left to billow in the wind and large planes of fabric remained void of any embellishment. Rather than relying solely on his signature ornamentation, Mr. Arora explored the possibilities of sheer paneling as decoration. Most often, he layered plain or lightly- beaded gauze over printed or brighter-hued fabric to create a hazy effect of foreground and background, or paired strips of layered chiffon with single net ribbons to create a sort of striped negative space. What a beautiful development- I can’t wait to see more!

Manish Arora S/s 2015. Image INDIGITALIMAGES

Those gorgeous embellishments did however make an appearance in limited degrees, in the runway lineup. Shift dresses, bandeaux tops, long sari skirts, tunics, jackets and hoodies were covered in trompe-l’œil rococo motifs; trailing vines of sparkly beadwork, lush embroidery, ropes of pearls and cabochon crystals, crystal-encrusted roses, metal blossoms in high relief and appliqué patterns made of lazer cut mirrors and sequins. Cut in simple, sporty silhouettes and paired with plainer separates these eye- catching pieces felt airy and uncomplicated- even though decked out in the fabulous embroideries.

It’s easy street-style bait, and I’m confident that come spring there will be girls fighting over these pieces!

Manish Arora S/s 2015. Image INDIGITALIMAGES

There were also some stunning accessories spotted in the lineup. Iridescent gladiator platforms in silver leather and plastic were a big feature, as were embellished waist- bags (‘fanny packs’) and triangular backpacks covered in 3-D ornamentation. There were also some cool collar necklaces made out of bejewelled plastic reflectors, brightly- embellished clutches, printed tote bags, crystal-encrusted belts, glittering skullcaps and baseball caps covered in high-relief rococo adornment.

Manish Arora S/s 2015. Image DELHI STYLE DIARY

I’m quite impressed with them all and this season marks the release of the widest variety of pieces in Mr. Arora’s accessory line. I don’t think that I’ll ever warm to waist- bags as an accessory, but those clutches are fierce! As are those embellished baseball caps and skullcaps, but these are more suited for a high- glam rave rather than a run.

Manish Arora S/s 2015. Image INDIGITALIMAGES

The final walk-out premiered a series of white sweater dresses simply emblazoned with the images of a fluorescent eye or nose-ringed goddess. This range of active-wear inspired clothing made for a refreshing finish. These will no doubt be the best lure to draw crowds to Mr. Arora’s brand new Parisian flagship store.

Manish Arora S/s 2015. Image INDIGITALIMAGES

Beyond the maximalist vision that Manish Arora had developed, there is now a new realist perception of what women want today and Manish Arora is definitely catering to them (us). Even his simplest separates can revive the plainest outfits, and his all-over looks are certain to capture attention. Also- and very smartly, by offering such distinctive signature pieces, his work can’t be mistaken for anyone’s but Manish Arora’s… and in modern fashion, branding- even understated branding, is a huge part of a house’s success.

Manish Arora S/s 2015. Image INDIGITALIMAGES

This Spring 2015 collection is gorgeous and will no doubt draw a huge surge of new fans to the label. I’m totally in love, and you can be guaranteed that when this offering hits stores, I’ll be amongst the glamazons snatching up covetable pieces. That rose-embellished swing dress has my name on it!

Manish Arora’s Spring show is fierce!

-Ana

Gareth Pugh S/s 2015

Gareth Pugh S/s 2015. Image INDIGITALIMAGES

Gareth Pugh is, in my opinion, one of the few current designers who seamlessly bridges the gap between fashion and art. Every collection that he has released refined his abilities as an design artist and improved the production value of his shows… and he just keeps getting better. This year, Gareth Pugh was almost unmatched in his showmanship, while his Fashion Week events in New York and Paris were stunning in their creative appeal.

Gareth Pugh S/s 2015. Image INDIGITALIMAGES

On September 4th, at the very beginning of New York Fashion Week, Gareth Pugh staged “an immersive presentation,” a multimedia-infused spectacle complete with live dancers and an art presentation, all staged as an alternative to a conventional fashion show. It was an inspiring, breathtaking show and was literally one of those events that you had to experience in person to truly appreciate. Sadly, I think the photos from this show don’t effectively convey the artistry of the event, nor can you really appreciate the looks shown in these images- but happily, he staged a private showing in his Paris atelier on September 23rd.

Gareth Pugh S/s 2015. Image INDIGITALIMAGES

In a way this worked out for the best, since the showing coincided with the autumn eqinox- the second day of the year during which day and night are of equal duration and was celebrated with rites signalling the end of summer and the coming winter. However, instead of concentrating on the death of the summer months Gareth Pugh’s vision was firmly focused on the rites of Spring.

Gareth Pugh S/s 2015. Image INDIGITALIMAGES

Basically, it’s all about rebirth.

It’s also about his apparent shift in design aesthetic, since this is the first time that one of his collections has been so firmly rooted on planet Earth rather than in the stars. “I wanted it of the earth, rather than landed from a spaceship,” he stated, in tacit acknowledgment of the fact that his clothes often remind people of something extraterrestrial. The result is absolutely stunning.

Gareth Pugh S/s 2015. Image INDIGITALIMAGES

Everything is exquisitely- painstakingly– constructed and Mr. Pugh’s attention to detail is positively astounding! There are gowns made of hand-ripped strips of silk chiffon, coats and blouses studded with mother-of pearl buttons, jackets and gowns hand-encrusted with strips of metallic appliqué. Some looks are constructed from layers of frayed silk strips and there’s a stunning blouse made completely out of lengths of silky rope. Burlap made a brief appearance in some eye-catching handkerchief – hemmed pieces, as did Mr. Pugh’s signature black and white geometric patterned silk.

Gareth Pugh S/s 2015. Image INDIGITALIMAGES

The designer was able to fit in his trademark artistry into the showing- huge masks of papier-mâché in the shape of steer skulls, geometric silk masks, corn dolly hats and embellished leather chest pieces in the shape of pentagrams were stunning accessories. There was also a huge round circle covered with hand-ripped rags of chiffon (it’s a representation of the Padstow “Obby” Oss costume), a playsuit and mask covered with little chiffon flowers and a burlap scarecrow suit. Talk about wearable art!

Gareth Pugh S/s 2015. Image INDIGITALIMAGES

The clothes command your attention from the very start and then leave you shaking your head in amazement. Granted, it still takes a strongly confident woman to wear these pieces, Mr. Pugh’s design has greatly developed from its theatrical beginnings, and has morphed into garments that can actually be worn rather than just studied and adored.

Gareth Pugh S/s 2015. Image INDIGITALIMAGES

There’s a lot of black-tie fare and some serious red-carpet stunners, but throughout the collection I can see looks that will work in formal corporate settings, elegant day events and at weddings. There are even some gowns that would make absolutely stunning wedding dresses (especially those fabulous ripped chiffon gowns!) and some of the simpler pieces could easily be worn to cocktail parties.

Gareth Pugh S/s 2015. Image INDIGITALIMAGES

Gareth Pugh’s collection is absolutely incredible, and I’m in love with almost every look. His showings always offer a break from the expected run-of-the-mill Fashion Week events and this year’s showing has gone beyond the already high standard that we’ve come to expect from the designer.

Truly stunning!

P.S., WHY IS GARETH PUGH NOT DESIGNING FOR THE HOUSE OF MC QUEEN??!? Look at all that edge! Sarah Burton, please please bring all of this back to your house.

-Ana

Friday Fierceness!

NADJA- Vogue Germany November 2014

Fur shrug: Phillip Plien, Bodysuit: Mugler Archive, Pumps: Yves Saint Laurent, Hose: Fogal. Image VOGUE GERMANY/LUIGI+IANGO

Model: Nadja Auermann
Photographer: Luigi+Iango
Stylist: Patti Wilson
Hair: Luigi Murenu
Makeup: Virginia Young

Emilio Pucci S/s 2015

Emilio Pucci S/s 2015. Image NOWFASHION

Judging from the excess of suede fringe, kerchief dresses and bell-bottomed trousers that we’ve been seeing, it’s safe to say that the 70s came back in a big way at Milan’s s/s 2015 Fashion Week- and no where was it done better than at Emilio Pucci.

Emilio Pucci S/s 2015. Image NOWFASHION

Pucci has a legitimate claim to this territory, as the late sixties and seventies was when this colorful house exploded onto the international fashion radar with their mod prints and fierce Italian style aesthetic. Judging from this show, house designer Peter Dundas proved to all of Milan that he truly is the master of revamped seventies when he debuted Pucci’s breezy, colourful collection for Spring 2015.

Emilio Pucci S/s 2015. Image NOWFASHION

Vintage is the look for Spring at Pucci, with bright seventies colour and embellishments along with the house’s signature prints. Think fringe and hippie beading, studs and swirling embroidery, paisley and abstract florals…mustard yellow (I know. Even I had initial doubts about that colour, but its grown on me). Yes, the seventies are definitely back, but with a touch of 90’s edge and new millennium strut.

Emilio Pucci S/s 2015. Image NOWFASHION

This offering screams seventies- but only the jet-setting seventies. Think yachting around the sun-kissed Mediterranean shores, all night dancing under the neon lights of top tier clubs and mornings spent sunbathing. It’s Bellinis at Harry’s Bar with Talitha Getty… beautiful people, the beach and rock and roll. The collection is a definite nod to the best of a legendary time and as an overall showing, its everything.

Its vintage, but it’s a modern vintage, with Mr. Dundas interpreting his vision of seventies luxury rather than rehashing pieces that have been done before.

Emilio Pucci S/s 2015. Image NOWFASHION

Let’s start at the end of the show, where the designer chose to blend iconic Pucci prints with tie-dye patterns and psychedelic pop-art motifs on silk chiffon. Its a combination that made for some killer maxi dresses crafted with bold jeweled halter necklines, simple strappy racer-backs or stitched the silk onto beaded bra tops while leaving the rest of the FABric to sweep across the floor in large trapeze planes. Transparent chiffon grazes over beaded swimwear, while clouds of printed silk gauze and cotton voile are appliquéd with swirls of embroidery and feather-light beading. It’s the stuff of dreams, and this is the part of the showing where Mr. Dundas went in for the fabulous kill.

Emilio Pucci S/s 2015. Image NOWFASHION

Bohemian chic daywear was also well done, with the ultra slim pants and fitted flower-embellished jackets being particularly stunning. Also stunning were washed cotton silk voile peasant blouses, fringed dresses, skinny flared trousers in canvas-weight linen, suede jackets and beaded macramé dresses in silk guipure. Gorgeous! There were sportier looks too, with crisp sheaf dresses and slim jumpsuits with huge button-detailed straps being seen!

Emilio Pucci S/s 2015. Image NOWFASHION

Simply put, it’s a fabulous show, and I can see women everywhere going wild over this collection (I’m counting the days until it’s available online). Can’t you just imagine how much more beautiful toned, tanned skin and sun bleached hair will be made by his colorful Boho ensembles?

Darlings, it so chic its fierce!

-Ana