Tag Archives: Vera Wang

Fall 2019 RTW

This is a crazy time for fashion. Well, it’s a crazy time – so it has to be a crazy time in fashion if fashion is doing its job. I would venture to say that not since the epic revolution of the late 1960’s has the world seen such upheaval and such chaos. Our culture is facing some harsh realities with the MeToo movement, LGBTQ revelations and setbacks, social media domination,  the political climate of all out war between Red and Blue, record breaking government shutdowns and Brexit. Fashion has been affected in various ways – as it should be and needs to be, where designers are choosing their topics to tackle on the runways. Some are more literal using phrases and images, some are subtle using silhouette and avant guarde, some are switching gender roles and so forth. The runways have been bananas, who knows where we will land.

Kes

Again, not an exciting collection – unless you’re into comfortable, practical, easy to throw on and go clothes. In which case – YES! This will do just fine. I’ve been on an unofficial hunt for a good jumpsuit in the style of the traditional Dickies men’s one piece and this one looks pretty good, not perfect but close and the long lean coats in rich fabrics are divine. These are good solid basics, cut well in high quality fabrics.

Vera Wang

I believe that after dominating the bridal market for so many years Wang has been in a position to be more experimental with her design. A few years ago her more commercial ready to wear line took a hard turn into almost avant guarde. Definitely more of a gothic/alternative vibe. The looks had purposely experimental and avant guarde elements like 5″ platforms with 9″ heels, or sleeves that came to the knee. She hasn’t tired of these elements yet either – as they appear in this current season too – but along side these hard to translate to life looks there are items that are easily wearable on the right woman. They speak of confidence and introduce a rare if ever seen before combination of edgy and elegant. Look at these pleated trousers – brilliant.

 

For Restless Sleepers

I looooove this line. They are doing something so wonderful in fashion. While everyone else seems to be clamoring for exposure, they are quietly creating decadent clothes in rich vibrant colors and sumptuous fabrics for women. Their use of traditional zoological and chinoiserie motifs has become part of their identity and you can count on seeing glorious elaborate prints in jewel tones covering luxe silks and satins. It feels like a banquet for the eyes full of classic elegance with a indulgent helping of eccentricity. I would live in these clothes if I could.

 

Luisa Beccaria

This collection is chocked full of light as air florals accented with delicate embroideries and layered with lovely silk velvets and faux furs. Not exactly screaming modern… not exactly screaming at all. This is in fact a whisper. There is a refreshing delicacy to this that feels like a spring breeze. It evokes a simpler time of beauty and fresh air and it has a kind of  literary romance element. I can’t really recall a specific piece or dress that stood out but the feeling of this collection is the takeaway. And it felt good.

 

 

Snow Xue Gao

This is the first I’ve seen of this designer and I am intrigued. I tend to gravitate to Asian influence in print and fabrics. The storytelling imagery and heavy jacquard silks in vibrant jeweltones or dusty shades are a long time favorite. I’m always excited to see them pop up on the runway. Here they have made some lovely wearable pieces, especially in the charming day dress and they have done something very interesting with the layering of the jackets. The contrast of the old and new in the plaids over the silks or vice versa. Its very thoughtful and I can’t wait to see more.

 

Simone Rocha

Simone Rocha is fearless and concise in her use of texture and embellishments. It shows true talent to be able to push into the territory of over designed but then pulling back at just the right moment. There is so much going on but it all fits together like a 4 dimensional puzzle. In the use of layering sheer with embroidered and sequined and solids she creates complex and multi level looks that are fascinating to behold. Last season I was impressed with the idea of layering over coats and this season seems to be a natural and successful progression of that idea.

Paco Rabanne

This collection was choked full of references to the past. There was 1930’s, 1940’s, glam, country, rock and many more. I for one love any old Hollywood reference so I was happy to see the bias cut floral dresses and embellished cardigans which are reminiscent of the ones I wore when I went through my thrifting phase in High school. It’s not forward or modern nor is it on the cutting edge. What it is, is expressive, playful and lighthearted, things we could all use a bit of right now.

Libertine

When London solidified it’s standing in the fashion world it did so by bringing the fun. It was the 1960’s and London was the new fashion capitol because they had a point of view that connected with youth, vitality, music – ultimately a feeling of a bright and shiny future. It did this by celebrating color and shape, experimentation and trends. Plastic dresses and go go boots, ultra minis and mod silhouettes. Libertine as a brand seems to honor this legacy of fashion from London in every collection. Often there are direct references to the 1960’s through icons and silhouettes, other times it’s the styling but it is always there and you kinda have to love them for it. This season was no exception.

Jeremy Scott

Is on a roll right now. Between this collection and his most recent for Moschino he is creating political, culture commenting, covetable fashion. When I say Fashion – it is in the most literal sense of the word. These clothes are of this specific moment in time and he’s nailed it.  This collection is straight from the headlines that dominate and corrupt our daily lives with their scandals and provocations. It is an overwhelming time and this collection shows how much we all live with it, wear it on our faces and our choices so why not on our clothes. No question this collection will be in a museum someday and if Scott continues on this trajectory he will be celebrated in the Met for his contributions in years to come.

 

Phuong My

Another new designer this season. I’m not sure who this customer is, perhaps an older lady in her 40’s at least but more like her mid 50’s, 60’s… who wants to be edgy but not look like shes trying to be 20. There is sophistication here for sure and the clothes are cut and proportioned perfectly. There isn’t a lot of variation in color or fabrics here and it could only be better if they offered some option for those who don’t want satin, or red and black. Its almost as if they had collected the most solid looks from the last 20 years as shown by the most forward designers and brought them all to one collection. Here we see that the full (exaggerated) hip, the asymmetric dress and the origami shapes (which are standard edgy fare) are some of the biggest influences.

Dolce & Gabbana

Over 100 looks that are at times retro and whimsical while covered in pattern and trope loi. I love it which is why Dolce & Gabbana have been a favorite of mine since high school when I pasted their advertisements on the walls. I love the world they have created; one full of heroines and theater, romance and glamour. Here they had a bit of a 1930’s – 1940’s old Hollywood element that I find irresistible. Not to mention that they seemed to have gotten the memo that women are wearing their menswear so they have featured some of the menswear on the ladies this season.

Alexander McQueen

Leather and lace, literally and figuratively. The contrast of hard and feminine has been a long running point of inspiration for McQueens’ Burton and she is featuring two extremes in this collection with great success. The addition of the punk element is also a standard but I love how she showed consideration of the movement in her embellishments. Punk invented what we call DYI bedazzling when they painstakingly hand studded cheap upholstery tacks through dense leather – which isn’t easy btw. At times even making clothes entirely with safety pins. She has one jacket in particular where she uses said safety pins to attach and embellish a exquisitely cut blazer with antique buttons. She also uses other “cheap” items as punks would have, like zippers, chains, snaps and hooks with deftness and honor.  It is no doubt her respect for the past and her Bristish culture that drives her design forward and it’s just brilliant.

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Fall 2014 Ready to Wear

The Fall collections are the most anticipated of the year. It is here where you will see the strongest work of the season (hopefully) from the designers. Collections can be anywhere from 10 looks to 50 (if you are Karl Lagerfeld).  Every designer shows for Fall so there are hundreds of shows to see and likely thousands of collections to review. Here we have widdled them down from merely hundreds to just a simple few of the most impressive. In no particular order,  here they are:

No. 21

Always a fan of sparkle for the daytime. I love the dressed down styling here which lets you see just how easy it is to wear glitter in the afternoon. The pants are ca-razy and I would wear them all the time everywhere with a wife beater and an army jacket.  Also love a piece that does all the work for you like this coat for example – which could be thrown over anything and look like an outfit.

 No. 21

Diesel Black Gold

We used to carry Diesel at the shop.  We sold the hell out of the jeans and leather pants but never had much success with the rest of the line. This is because most of the time garments were trying too hard to be street and just came off kind of cheesy. There were lots of neon trims and graffiti style randomness on the clothes. This always made me crazy because they were cut well and fit well so they didn’t need all that nonsense. It makes me happy to see clean, wearable pieces that aren’t loaded up with trendy gimmicks. These are all great pieces here and I bet I could sell the hell out of them.

aa Diesel Black Gold

Michael Kors

I love this collection. Kors just keeps getting better or at least maintaining his high standard.  This is the sophisticated lady that is achievable for women. His clothes are priced well and he cuts with more sizes than most which is awesome because not all women with class and style are rocking a 26″ waist.

The fringe bags are cool without being western or overly bohemian. The suitings are drapey and easy not stiff and straight. It all looks so classic and charming, flawless.

B Michael Kors bags

b Michael Kors

Haider Ackermann

This is one of the best modern designers. I mean he designs modern. The clothes have a timelessness that seems to be of the future. They are designed utilizing all our modern techniques and fabrications with out feeling forced. He really has an innate insight into what it means to design clothing for now – without being derivative.  He has a true vision all his own that speaks to today – truly a designer who was born at the exact right time.

c.Haider Ackermann

Prabal Gurung 

I don’t always like experimental because often times it steps into art and thus no longer functions. This designer often manages to make something that could easily be classified as such look totally chic and wearable.

e Prabal Gurung

Roberto Cavalli

Once again there are just too many to choose from. I love Cavalli – clearly – as I probably have pinned more of his looks than any other designer.  I want to live in this world. These are clothes for living the fantasy and what would fashion be without the dream? This is where I would go for the killer dress – the knockout suit – the drop dead scene-stealer. This collection has some awesome moments – for instance, the leather studded fringe that somehow manages not to look like something Versace would do and make cheesy. The 1920’s glamour puss flapper dresses with the art deco beading that transition from “Angel” to “Devil” and the (holy fuck!) Flame coat with the fur collar… Yes.

ee Cavalli suits eee Cavalli black eeee Cavalli white dresses eeeee Cavalli red

Jason Wu

This is 1998. I wore these draped bias cowl neck dresses in burned out velvet and the plum patent leather witch shoes. I rocked them then and I would do it again. They are not original, not modern and not classic. They are pretty clothes and I really want those T-Straps at the end.

eeeeee Jason Wu

Salvatore Ferragamo

Ombre Crocodile? I give, you got me. I know Ombre is a crazy trend right now and I know it’s probably going to look like rainbow suspenders in hindsight but it’s just so cool.

eeeeeee Salvatore Ferragamo

Erdem

The clothes in this collection were beautiful and had some really gorgeous details.

The shoes blew them all out of the water.

Erdem

Vera Wang

I don’t think anyone could possibly argue the talent of Vera Wang. She is always experimenting with technique which is the mark of a true artist. The fact that she consistently turns out wearable clothing is a testament to her savvy . I also love that her accessories’ are always part of the designs – no afterthought. You can tell the jewelry has received the same scrutiny as the garments. In this collection she has once again shown us something new with the fabric treatments and details. There is always a sense of romance in her collections  (I say fully aware of her Bridal notoriety) that mixes dare I say; dangerously, with the darkness that is always right at the surface.

I think she is awesome – a true businesswoman in black leather gloves.

g Vera Wang g Vera Wang details

Hugo Boss

I never think of Hugo for women. Just suits. Nice men’s suits that you get at Nordstrom where they throw in free tailoring. These two looks caught my attention though because they have successfully accomplished something where many have tried and many have failed. These are both charming examples of the schizophrenic look we are seeing EVERYWHERE. The half pant / half dress of the she male from old timey freakshows has apparently been inspiring fashion.  Rarely is it successful and usually just looks like what it is – two looks cut in half and sewn together. I can see the designer in the fittings insecurely tilting his head to the side while the entourage all nod and say, “it’s fabulous!” Bullshit. It’s dumb.

But here, here it actually is done quite gracefully and it’s not too forced. It doesn’t look off balance at all. In fact the movement of the chiffon gives the feel that a full skirt has just blown open from the breeze to reveal the shimmery pencil skirt underneath. The fluidity adds a softness and mystique to the looks. Success! At last someone does it right.

gg Hugo Boss

John Rocha

I don’t know what this fabric is. Some kind of coated lace? It’s probably the best party dress I have ever seen.

h John Rocha

Talbot Runhof

I can only hope that they didn’t mess this up by featuring an open back or something predictably daring like that. This is like the hip yet obnoxious maxi dress you’d expect to see in some stock footage from the 1970’s. It was cool then for the same reason it’s still cool. It’s bold.

j Talbot Runhof

John Galliano

 What John Galliano did for Christian Dior was outstanding. He was/is by far the most fun, exciting, inspired madman of fashion. His disgrace is tragic as he is a true genius of fashion. He is what makes fashion so fun to watch. Apparently this line that goes under his name is not even designed by him.  This  is apparent even if you are not that familiar with his work and that too is disappointing. All things considered, I really like these two looks whoever they came from.  There is a bit of apocalyptic freedom in them that I really enjoy and they look comfortable. I do wish Galliano would design his own line though.

k John Galliano

Anna Sui

I have always looked forward to seeing the collections of Madam Sui. We carried her line in the store and the day her collection would arrive was one filled with the delighted squeals of shop girls. Always bohemian and always rock and roll – you can count on that. This is an awesome group inspired by a 1920’s starlet which is a muse that is always dear to my heart. The leopard, the chinoiserie, the silks and the fringe!!! Oh my oh my! I wish we could still put in a big fat order as I would defiantly be taking a few pieces home for myself. I miss you Anna.

l Anna Sui comp

Ladies in Lace

Lace was a big deal this season and it came in many manifestations. Here are some of the best.

Alexandre Herchcovitch and Tadashi Shoji both had their own version of this demure and delicate lady in white lace. Both are stunning.

Lace

Luisa Beccaria

Almost evoking Alice in Wonderland, when I first saw this I thought Temperly London. It’s just so pretty.

m Luisa Beccaria

Marchesa

How cool is this? The way they treated the lace with the dye and the texture, it’s like a doll that has faded and been worn out from years of play. It tells such a romantic and mysterious story. I love that, there is art here.

Marchesa

Alberta Ferretti

These are just light and pretty and feminine and very editorial. The lace overlay on the layers of sheer netting(?) is lovely. There is a kind of Victorian nightgown, 1930’s film noir dressing gown thing happening that is irresistible. These will be beautiful in the campaign photographs. I see a dimly lit Italian parlor with models strewn over fainting couches looking forlorn and melancholy.

mm Alberta Ferretti

Valentino

Another showing featuring dramatic prints, elaborate details and exquisite craftsmanship. I mentioned in a previous post that these are truly collectable garments. These pieces will without question be in museums in the near and far future. What is happening in the house of Valentino is as close to ready to wear couture as you can get and it is amazing. Oh and the shoes – wow. Wow wow wow.

n Valentino n V3

Alexander McQueen

This collection immediately made me think of Arthur Rackham. It is dark and fanciful – a Goth girl just loves that kind of thing. The detail smacks of couture in the best way possible. These clothes are obviously not meant to be practical but Lee McQueen was sure to dismiss any notion that his house existed in order to be practical in his earliest of collections. His successor has surely done him proud in her continuation of the fantasy that he clearly loved and strove to manifest. Not an easy act to follow by any means ( how do you  follow a tortured artist??? ) but Sarah Burton seems to be the exact right protégée for the job.

o Alexander McQueen

Wendy Nichol

I don’t think we have featured this designer before but if there is more where this came from we are sure to feature her again! These two dresses in particular are so beautifully considered. They have been designed just to the point where one more detail would be too much. Seaming georgette (?) is a tricky task and can cause all kinds of pulling, shifting, throwing off the whole drape – altering lengths and on and on.  They have achieved something very special here in the way the dresses fit that is admiable and quite lovely. These are gorgeous gowns that wink at the 1930’s and the invention of the bias cut. They feel timeless – my favorite thing.

Wendy Nichol

Iris Van Herpen

This is the only look I pinned from this collection. Normally that wouldn’t warrant being included in the favorite looks of the season, however this dress stands out. It is so simple and fluid yet the fabric looks modern while also looking ethereal. It’s like part dressing gown part resort kaftan. I would love to style this with some long beaded necklaces in dark red or pyrite or even tourmaline…hmm. You see? It inspires the wearer to make it their own. You could go heavy or light, dress it up or down – heels, boots, sandals – the possibilities! So great – I love it even more.

www Iris van Herpen

Kaufmanfranco

These gowns are fitted perfectly. The proportions are exact. These each represent an updated version of an era – the first the 1970’s, the second the 1950’s and the 3rd the 1990’s.  Here you have three looks that speak of classic decadent glamour but with a contemporary feel. The beading and sequin are expertly handled resulting in elegance – which is not always easy when dealing in sparkle.  You must be young, you must be fit, you must be privileged to wear these gowns. Not gonna happen for most of us but wouldn’t it be sad if they stopped designing for the dream?

wwww Kaufmanfranco

Would love to hear your thoughts – agree or disagree, who did we miss, who should have been included? Comments are welcomed!

See you again for resort!