Tuesday, January 27, 2009

DVF: Spring 2009

When speaking of the design legend that is Diane Von Furstenberg, one would have to agree that it is a tale of a dynasty that has largely contributed to the shape of American fashion as we know it.   Her legacy is a myriad of iconic patterns and prints that have been inspiring the contemporary palettes of women from every walk of life for decades.  This season was perhaps one of her strongest ever in terms of developing abstract prints that are easily understood by the DVF woman.
Dots are always a safe bet when it comes to inserting a light hearted print to appease the buyer's requests for key items, but even here (above) we see DVF feathers the edges and adds an asymmetrical edge for a slightly more ethnic flavor, like that of an animal skin.
In both of these looks (above & below) oblong geometric shapes are fused together with moody yet complimentary colors to give the illusion of a floral softness.

Above, the hombre moment is interpreted nicely by achieving a swooping angle on the diagonal.  It is always characteristic of the DVF design squad to have a light-hearted look in the collection.  However, despite the fact that a tunic (below) is printed with the whimsical feel of  butterflies, the strategic border placements helps it adhere to the standard of sophistication that is always a part the overall initiative in her collections.  This show was fashioned after the likeness of a rock goddess with nostalgic hints of a "hippie" era past and is filled with looks and prints that will be adored for years to come.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Play A Classic Please

Just like a favorite Rock-N-Roll tune, John Varvatos cranks out recognizable ideas that appeal to the nostalgic persona and the rebellious type. Traditionally, etoile is story telling on fabric that connotes a classic reverence and marks definitive moments in textile history.  Above, an ordinary pair of trousers takes a dramatic turn down memory lane for a juxtaposed feeling of rebellion and Varvatos style.
Remaining true to the more regal qualities of this print, B. Michael(above) creates a more subdued interpretation by using it to give his classic tailoring an intricate sense of male elegance.  From opposite points of view, both designers were able to take an obviously archival print and play it on an updated silhouette to make it relevant to their respective customer bases.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

A Look & A Jacket

Living in the era of "casual chic" it is imperative to find a balance of being comfortably appropriate and at the very least, dashing. It is very possible to pump a little personality into your Spring looks by adding some texture to the basic black jacket. Below, Comme de Garcon delivers a horizontal variable by printing the illusion of tie dye for a play on convention.

At Alexander McQueen, "extreme chic" is always the inspiration. The hombre feeling applied to the jacket below instills a sense of fearless style for the adventure seeker in all of us. This technique is nothing new, but, the vertical application is eye-catching and is among my favorite interpretations of this trend.

Friday, January 16, 2009

Goddess of Trends

Though there were no Greek tragedies in the theaters in 2oo8, the myth of Aphrodite will surely walk the red carpet at the Oscar's this year. Virtually every designer that boasts to interpret eveningwear opted to insert toga-like draping into the collection this season. Above, in a typical Missoni approach, a minimal geometric design gives this organic shape a deeper sense of character and a slighty tribal take on the initial concept.

First, I must comment on how exciting is it to see Halston(above) back in the swing of things and showing in the tents. The tie-dye effect is achieved via the new technology of digital printing and it is quite an impressive and authentic looking piece without looking computerized or overdone.

Yigal Azrouel (above), is perhaps more influenced by the more casual side of this look that is slowly coming into dominance on the streets of Paris. However, the silhouette is an homage to the Greco-Roman magnetism of this trend and the vertebrae print adds effortless flow to the gown.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Stephen Sprouse

The Stephen Sprouse Exhibition at Deitch in SoHo is by far the most stunning season opener to hit New York in a very long time. It truly puts Sprouse's fashion initiatives in the light of great artistic conceptions that were always larger than any boutique window display. He made use of mass produced commercial imaging to give prints a familiar sense of Pop reference that stimulated a visual art movement in textiles. The installation refers not so much to the art itself as it does to the attitude that inspired it. You can definitely expect to see a surge of this very unique style resurge in home goods in the very near future to cater to the "i"-generation.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Bold & British

London is an epicenter of panache and distinctive style and it is easily recognized as British, even though it is sometimes referred to as stuffy and staid.  A new wave of designers are giving the U.K. a prominent position in the realm of fashion innovation in a bold and forward approach.  Nathan Jenden and Duro Oluwu are leading the pack by fusing intricate patterns together with vibrant and flamboyant color combinations.  Honorable mention goes to the genius of Basso & Brooke  and the groovy looks produced by the team at Fashion Fringe for implementing a use of color that puts Britain firmly on the map of stylish prints.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Change of Direction

A simple stripe takes on a life of motion and a new orientation of proclivity when Eley Kishimoto fragments the bold bands of color and tosses them around.  This is a fun and flirty look for all ages in a patriotic geometric. 
Here DKNY challenges the eye to make sense out of the familiar by wedging linear anarchy between the visual texture of calibrated ikats.  The pieces are quirky and speak loudly as an collective statement, and I think we can all appreciate the need to take a creative vacation from the norm.

Changing the scale of a simple print in the breadth of a repeat(elements of a design duplicated to create a uniform pattern) can formulate an engineered look of contrived harmony by simply shifting the negative space in a purposeful manner.  Dries Van Noten is an eminent soveriegn of print innovation and this look is just another masterpiece for the archives.