Wednesday, 30 May 2012

Intelligent Opulence

As the sun starts to retreat back behind the clouds, and the light breeze we once welcomed to cool down our sun kissed shoulders turns to blustery, hair stuck to lip gloss type gales, I had the perfect excuse to look forward to the looks of A/W '12 and lay down my own view of what the shows had to offer us this February...

Dressing in the face of economic uncertainty, this season’s woman defies the law of most and indulges in intelligent frivolity. Wearing carefully selected pieces to slip seamlessly between the choices of seasons past, opulence still lives on in the form of embellishment, luxury finishes and materials oozing affluence and refinement.

Marking his tenth anniversary at the house of Lanvin, Alber Elbaz provided a delicious array of embellishment and clean lines. Among the rounded contours of leather and velvet lay coloured jewels of Tower of London proportions. Worn like medals of triumph the Lanvin woman, walking to Lesley Gore’s ‘You don’t own me’ sticks a manicured finger up to budget cuts and naysayers alike, and wears her monies earned with pride.

Miu Miu adds a delightful touch of texture with interlocked perspex disks placed playfully over shirts and ties. Pumping extravagance and depth into wardrobe basics, the renewal of last year’s cuts adds the intelligence to the frivolity. 

Louis Vuitton shows that it’s the little things that count, with suited maidens de-boarding a steam train, luxury fastenings running parallel to their first class tickets, providing not only functionality but decoration du jour. An elongated silhouette enhanced by Stephen Jones’ millinery exploits cements the look of pride and assurance whilst flickers of metallic brocade realises the air of exuberance which is worn almost as an accessory of it’s own.  

As if not to be out done, Moschino’s offering of printed golden embroidery provides the perfect host for the regal nature of this trend. A white runway illuminated by blackened out surroundings ensures the perfect stomping ground for the likes of Cara Delevingne, Ruby Aldridge, and Arizona Muse. Walking to the beat of marching band drums, marching strides slowly melt into a muted trance melody. A regimented brigade of Cadbury’s purple and canary yellow, the Moschino girl sports wrists full of gold and a heart to match.

The Salle Wagram was transformed into a cavern of darkness for the McQueen show. Spherical light bulbs hung like illuminated stalactites, highlighting the path to “a beautiful future, positivity, optimism” as described by Sarah Burton herself. Fuscia, blood red and powder puff pinks were sandwiched between swathes of white, providing the perfect habitat for the decoration embedded in the fabrics. A well turned out girl’s girl anchored by heel-less shoes showcased sheathes of tiered chiffon, with a boscage of ostrich feathers literally competing for the attention of the spotlights. Black visors sat anonymously, reflecting the artificial lighting from the ceiling of the listed building. Hiding the windows to the sole, they serve as the perfect shield to weather out the pecuniary storm. 

Luxury’s matriarch, this season’s woman pays no attention to pessimists, indulging in the finest materials and adorned in a treasure chest of jewels. 

A designer is anyone who devises ways to change existing situations into preferred ones. Fashion waits for no recession, but simply soldiers on, shaping the world around it to become a better place.


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