Structure, or lack thereof, proved a key focal point for
many designers for SS13. On last September’s runways we saw a more relaxed and
playful style with designers abandoning sleek tailoring
for slouchy silhouettes and plenty of volume. In a season of
deconstructed suits, oversized shapes and floating chiffon, the loose fitting
aesthetic was champion of the catwalk.
Dries van Noten offered a deliciously curious collection inspired by a
mix of 90s grunge and classic couture, marrying quintessentially feminine and
masculine elements to create an 'opposites attract' motif. This collection gave
centre stage to the oversized silhouette, its simplicity epitomised in a
slouchy grey sweater over a loose checked shirt and flowing floral trousers. Van
Noten fused ease and luxury in this collection, which featured flowing kimono
jackets and chiffon lounging trousers, fronting a bohemian blasé vibe. We also
saw an artful layering of plaid and organza, its relaxed grunge feel consistently
maintaining a sense of feminine elegance.
(Dries van Noten mages courtesy of Vogue.co.uk)
Haider Ackermann's signature was a cascade of layered fabrics and loose tailoring. Here, the concept of power dressing was twisted, deconstructing the typical suit with trailing slip dresses over drainpipe trousers and dishabille robes rather than jackets. With a sombre colour palette featuring inky black, navy and stone grey, the focus became print and texture - sheer polka dot chiffon and geometric checks. Unlike other designers, Ackermann embraced the waist in his collection with cinching obi belts that allowed him to manipulate proportions to create that tall and languid silhouette.
(Haider Ackermann images courtesy of Vogue.co.uk)
Teatum Jones created an eclectic fusion of historical references and sci-fi futurism in the collection "From Democracy With Love"; drawing inspiration from the Cold War and old school science fiction movies. The nod to the Fifties and Sixties was clear in the feminine colour palette of pale pinks and porcelain, which adorned silk blend jackets, loose fitting silk dresses and elegant jumpsuits in floating chiffon. Metallic jackets, geometric prints and pleated Kimono style sleeves that hung to the knees brought a futuristic feel, and the smart tailoring, reminiscent of elegant icon Jackie O, perfectly underpinned the retro-futurism of the collection.
(Teatum Jones images courtesy of Vogue.co.uk)
Ashish presented us with a purposefully laidback collection, echoing a subverted stereotype of the geeky teenager. The result was a rebellious and carefree image, complete with oversized glasses, scrunchies and ironic slogan sweaters. The process of dressing down epitomised the collection, which utilised askew collars, slouchy tracksuit bottoms and oversized sweatshirts that looked as though like they might have been borrowed from a boyfriend's gym locker. Each model donned a scruffy topknot, which underpinned the careless and free spirited vibe. The soft muted colour palette of grey, camel and navy added to the teenager's school uniform look, yet the collection was far from plain. Ashish's characteristic flamboyance materialised in the form of sequins, which adorned everything from denim jumpsuits to skirts and tracksuits.
(Ashish images courtesy of Vogue.co.uk)
Central St. Martins graduate and L'Oreal Professional Young Design Award winner Yifang Wan impressed during Fashion Week with a modest monochrome collection. Inspired by the slick styling of martial arts movies, Wan harnessed clean lines with elegant and understated structures. The stark monochrome palette added to the fluidity of the pieces, using heavier fabrics such as elegantly hanging cotton to form the fluttering silhouettes. Oversized smocks and kimono dresses, flowing jackets and wide leg trousers were all used to great effect to create the graceful and minimalist aesthetic.
(Yifang Wan images courtesy of thestylecolumn.com)