Category Archives: Collection

Christopher Kane Resort 2012

Resort collections have arrived and what better way to kick off the fashion reviews than with Christopher Kane? Yes, Kane’s the new fashion darling, having jumped to international notoriety with his MA Fashion collection (2006), inspired by Versace’s lace dresses from circa early 90s. The collection won the grand prize and was shown at the Harrods window display after the show.

Anyway, Kane is known for his quirky inspirations, out-of-the-box combos, and borderline-tacky clothing. But Kane is not tacky at all. He manages to push boundaries with bravado but subtly (unlike some of his contemporaries, like Louise Goldin or Gareth Pugh). For Resort 2012, he got inspired by the prism and the rainbow it produces when it reflects white light. Some inspiration!

What we are offered is rainbow-patterned clothes with triangular shapes embedded in the construction (for example, sharp, triangular godets or raglan-cut sleeves), crisp silhouettes, some leather, pleated silver lamé and acid-like, fluorescent colors. The silhouettes are more figure-friendly with an abundance of A-line dresses and skirts, pin-straight trousers and the versatile blazer in a variety of colors and materials. Skirts are pleated and have a longer back, almost like a tail. Leather is also featured, preferred in a turquoise color. Jackets have no collars, lapels or buttons. I do not know how versatile can that be for working women, but it is a very different offering than what is out there!

Pleated, A-line rainbow dress with triangular, matching clutch. Some statement, huh?

Kane said to the press that the Resort collection (or pre-collection as it is sometimes named) gave him more opportunity to reach a wider audience and that he tried to include a bit of everything for every woman. Our hats off to him.

And from now on, I will add my own illustrations to the reviews. You can see the illustrations at etsy.com: http://www.etsy.com/shop/ladymacbeth86?ref=si_shop.

One of my illustrations of Kane’s 2012 Resort collection. This is a yellow blouse and trousers set with a silver lamé jacket (no lapels, collars or buttons)

Another illustration for this collection. Pictured are a raglan-sleeved blouse with a rainbow print and black sleeves and white trousers, along with a longer turquoise leather jacket.

My third illustration for this Resort collection. A-line dress with cap-sleeved, rainbow-printed fabric on the top and a pleated, silver lamé asymmetrical short skirt. The placket and collar on the top are also made of silver lamé.

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Stella McCartney Fall 2011

Another fantastic white dress

Trapeze dress in white net with circles stitched over the fabric.

Critics have given Stella McCartney’s latest collection a lukewarm reception. They do have a point: some of the looks did not work; McCartney attempted to take the masculine/feminine thing quite literally and the end result can look, on certain occasions, ill-fitting. But you have to love bravado, and McCartney certainly got over the pantsuit look she masters and tried a completely different venue.

There are pantsuits alright, but usually paired with oversized smocking jackets which looks like the model raided her beefy boyfriend’s closet.  This look is very conceptual and well-worked on McCartney’s part, yet the fit can look accidental and not intentional. Lantern sleeves are mixed in Mylar dresses; the feminine side is depicted by fantastic cocktail dresses in sheer nets and with leather circles stitched into the fabric. Some are fitted while others are trapeze dresses or shift dresses. It makes little difference. Towards the end of the runway we appreciate how the playful dresses combine with the masculine-tailored jackets. This is where both looks work the best.

McCartney has had a tendency to experiment occasionally with pattern drafting and the results were mixed. This is no exception. Whenever McCartney attempts to play with proportions in a bold way, it does not seem to quite work. There is something amiss. She is best with her flower print dresses and sexy tailored suits. The difference is that, this time, she took the risk and went with it all the way. The result? Utterly, but not effortlessly, creative.

Lantern sleeves in pleated Mylar dress

Now in black…

Lantern sleeves, gold fabric. Bold and creative, yet subdued.

Printed pantsuit. My retinas need recovery now.

Gray-colored pantsuit. Notice the exaggerated proportions.

Black pantsuit

McCartney misses with this trouser. Notice the ill-fitting crotch.

Yigal Azrouel Fall 2011 Review

THIS is how minimalism is done. Inspired. Eclectic. Contemporary. Refreshing. These words describe the collection Yigal Azrouel presented yesterday at NYFW. And I will take this moment to let you all know that the style.com review is not uploaded yet, so this review will be first!

The collection centers around a Y-line silhouette with multiple layering, simple and crisp tailoring and just a pop of color here and there. Azrouel manages shape, color, materials and cut with ease and grace. Certain outfits remind us of Chanel and Lagerfeld in its use of masculine clothing for womenswear, but Azrouel’s particular vision prevails intact. The proportion and cut of the coats (mostly loose-fitting, fluid and oversized) make a stark contrast to the sharpness and crispness of most of the pieces, primarily the trousers and buttoned shirts.

Long coats in neutral colors contrast the sharpness of the trousers. Notice the drop of royal blue.

Another alternative coat, even longer and more fluid. Sheepskin over the lapels add texture and draws the eye to the shoulderline.

Orange coat. A splash of color brings this ensemble into life and keeps it fun!

Another design element that captured me was the side-slit skinny coats. Azrouel opened a long slit to the side of some of his coats (the more fitted ones) so that the model could put her hand in the trouser’s pocket. I do not remember seeing anything like this before (and if anyone has, please let me know!) and it is an elegant but refreshing element that will certainly keep women clamouring for his collection.

Suit by Azrouel in white and black

Side-slit coat. Beautifully tailored and fitted, the side slit permits the wearer to put her hands in her trouser pockets.

Last, but definitely not least, are the dresses. Chic dresses for day and for night

were prominent in this collection as well. One of them, a stunning emerald green number, was paired with a black thin belt for ultimate refinement and elegance. Another dress was in stark white with sharp tailoring. The color (or lack thereof) brought the attention to the subtle construction details:

Emerald green dress, paired with a black belt and a turtleneck shirt.

White dress with black neckline, cuffs and belt.

White ensemble.

Orange trousers with crisp white jumper and buttoned shirt.

Beautiful lamé long dress with belt and silver flower details. But what’s it doing in this collection?!

The dress above was the only fault in the collection. Why lamé? Nothing else was in lamé in the rest of the clothes. Even though it is beautiful and well constructed, it is unnecessary, especially with the stunning white long dress! All in all, excellent collection: well-rounded, chic, contemporary and very wearable, and above all, creative.

Rodarte Fall 2011 Review

Commercial is the wrong word for it, but there’s no debating the fact that Kate and Laura [Mulleavy] are steadily getting savvier about the business end while maintaining their singular vision.

-Nicole Phelps, Style.com

The Mulleavy sisters do it again. Rodarte is one of the most innovative (if not the most innovative) pret-a-porter brand in New York Fashion Week.  For those of you who are not familiar with their work, they have recently done all of the ballet costumes for the Black Swan film, and even though many were betting on it, they were notFall 2011 nominated for an Academy Award. Anyhow, Rodarte’s usually urban-chic, embellished, crafty and artistic look has been subdued for this collection.

As Phelps notes, they got inspired by the film Days of Heaven, directed by Terrence Malick, which is reminiscent of the American Plains. Soft silk chiffon gowns are complimented and contrasted against heavier wheat-colored coats with geometric patterns; such patterns are clearly inspired in American craft needlework: quilts and trapunto. Color blocks in neutral colors create structured silhouettes that diverge from fluid, 40s- inspired long dresses with wheat print on their hems. This woman is slightly different from Rodarte’s clientele, but as Phelps comments in the quote above, the Mulleavy sisters have grasped the commercial viability of their product. The same happened to Alexander McQueen in latter days after his house was financially backed by Gucci, but dear old Alex took longer to realize this point. Rodarte has managed what many New York designers are not able of: create an artistically-inspired collection that is commercially sustainable without compromising their standards and vision and without copying European fashion trends.

Fall 2011

Sheer dress

Fall 2011

Quiltwork savvy

Fall 2011

Notice the wheatgrass print at the hem

Fall 2011

Blue coat

Fall 2011