The Big Round Up Womenswear FW2014, Part 1

As always we where overwhelmed with the flood of fashion beauty and material excellence coming over us during the global fashion weeks.

There was this continuous feel for sobriety, for real clothes and a new found spirit for informality motivated by utilitarian inspirations. Lot’s of chic citywear icons where given the sporty treatment. The best windbreaker, the most comfortable puff jacket, the most perfect trouser fit. Between those masses of garments some were excellent in their normality, perfect in execution, amazing in materiality. Supreme touch, perfect drape, etc. Technology is helping here and making top tailoring more accessible, performing textiles more sensual and expressive fashion textiles more functional.

Between those real clothes to please us, very close to what woman desire to wear instantly, we did spot some true fashion statements. In percentage not that many, but nevertheless there. Found mostly in expressive materials, holographic coatings, laminations, cuts, fringes, 3D embellishment and eye-catching patterns. Where past seasons were strong on craft we now sense a steady shift towards technology.

Then there is this big (in many ways) offering of the cosy and comfortable. We nearly dare to mention a return of the feel for cocooning. All about enveloping, embracing, sheltering and protecting. Wrapped in plaids, down blankets, furs, felt ponchos and most of all in knits.

Knits where everywhere this season. For separate items as well as total looks. Haider Ackermann uses them long, lean and liquid. Balenciaga is among the designers who experiment by laminating bulky knits; others just cut it as woven material, where many, as The Row, find excellence by use of precious fibre – cashmere has never been that big.

Where we expected previous season a future for narrative sets and spectacular venues this was limited to few. The stupendous supermarket setting of Chanel was the talk of the season, he vacuum-packed his bags where Iris van Herpen left her audience in awe by vacuum-packing her models. Both raised a manifest on consumerism, in Chanel’s case this is likely to be rather ironic. Political or social statements where hardly done. Fashion is where it used to be, fur is back bigger than ever without any thought or comment, quotes were there for a season in summer, but were empty phrases appliquéd on garments as decoration. Now the message was femininity, desire and being beautiful. Back to the core business of fashion.

In general it seems that designers very much care for how women feel, what a girl wants, how fashion makes them feel beautiful. Fall 2014 catwalk season was much more about the exploration of women’s fashion desires then about pushing designers signature looks.
Cherchez la femme!

URBAN TECH

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(Alexander Wang, Prada, Christian Wijnants, Balenciaga, Miu Miu)

Outdoor and urban sportswear never looked that glamorous. Alexander Wang showed utilitarian city wear in experimental tech textiles, Prada staged a boxy shearling in mirroring gold. Silver foil jackets at Christian Wijnants cover tech double knit shorts and Alexander Wang laminated cabled knit monty’s to cover chain knit skirts. Miu Miu uplifted normality by adding hologram gloss to quilted shirt jackets.

 

INTER-GALACTIC ROYALTY

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(Rodarte, Moschino, Thom Browne, Dolce & Gabanna, Etro)

Bumping into a Princess Leia look-a-like at Rodarte we realized that Starwars is still making waves. Jeremy Scott explored junk culture for Moschino and came up with the bright, brash and ingenious staging their urban princess, Thom Browne evoked the ecclesiastical and went for the sublime, it where king’s that inspired Dolce & Gabanna to dress up this princess, she is showing us the key towards success. Veronica Etro met her royalty during a trip down the Silk Road.

KNIT IT

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(Yohji Yamamoto, Céline, The Row, Céline)

Knit is big in all senses. Impressive knit volumes – soft, bulky and warm at Yohji Yamamoto. Sensuality and tenderness is what drove Phoebe Philo towards her all knit wardrobes for Céline. Instant luxury is what the models must have felt when The Row covered them in these super-size double face cashmere knits. Simple, still and ultimately comfortable.

Stylespot is a collaboration with Stijlinstituut Amsterdam