Review – Burberry Prorsum, Calvin Klein Collection, DKNY, Rachel Comey
Christopher Bailey flirted with the idea of winter in his pre-fall collection. An amalgam of the chic with the sophisticate, while remaining positively committed to Britain’s tradition arts and crafts. He belted out diaphanous long silhouettes- frilly lace gowns, burnout printed dresses, chiffon midi-lengths- with bulky winter ones- fur pencil skirts, woolen jackets and silken jacquard straight fit pants. The secret to each piece lay in the detailing, for instance the floral velvet appliqué and the 3D lurex jacquard pattern. A print making its way slowly but vehemently was the map print, a whole map reproduced on a trench coat and the clear monumental illustrations on T-shirts and sweaters indicated a bigger trend coming on for fall. The colour palette was jewel toned, beautiful shades of emerald green, amethyst purple, ruby red and topaz yellow radiated extravagance on the clothes. The final look comprised an unfussy long evening gown under a cropped leather and fur jacket- watermarked Britain style.
Francisco Costa must have envisioned his pre-fall collection tucked in a warm blanket, why else would his women be adorning silhouettes so surprisingly snug? With their arms hidden in longer than usual sleeves, models strutted smoothly in super-comfy coats (that would easily pass off as knit dresses) and night pajamas. The designer, with his granny cardigans, modest slip dresses and long, languid skirts, tapped on the peaceful calm before the winter. Even the simplest inclusion of a thin thread around the waistlines resembled a DIY activity rather than a sartorial element (or at least made to look like one). For his evening looks, Costa fed on tunic lengths- double breasted coats and cardigans- and serene maxi dresses. Other than the little colour that the maxis had to offer- fleeting baby pink and oxblood- the shredded sequin fabric they were constructed in, is likely to catch attention. 2014, according to the designer, is for the homely soul and if his colour palette of frozen greys is anything to go by, we have ourselves a very pleasant winter ahead.
Spring Summer stated the brand turning 25 quite clearly and this collection continued celebrating just that, in its own sporty chic sensibility. Jersey tank tops and sweatshirts splashed DKNY, Pizza or Caviar and 25 logos across the chest. Laser cut skirts with fluted hems gave way to tie-up shirtdresses and pleats of sorts- knife, box and heat set. Revisiting the sporty element, Donna infused zippers into a detachable sleeve and skirt dress and shaped out mesh for cropped sweatshirts and basketball shorts. The sheer patchwork in different textures on column dresses was tantalizing and so was the merger of a satin paneled coat with casual sweats. After the strict black and white rule, the pop of colour was welcomed in the form of powder blue, pastel pink and eggshell. The collection subtly displayed summer ensembles with winter separates thrown on top, befitting of pre-fall.
Comey’s women have posed in dark alleys for her pre-fall collection, perfect for a designer whose body of work has knocked on the discreet side of femininity. She thrives on a self-created androgyny; her unforced switch between masculinity and femininity in this offering validates just that. So while signature long shirts, boxy jackets and boyish culottes were meant for Comey aficionados, 70’s midi lengths dresses and flouncy blouses presented an alternate theory. Few looks where the designer brought together opposing elements- boxy jackets worn over pleated dresses or skirts- did suggest the possibility of contrasting silhouettes. A single sighting of a sporty jacket aside, there were a host of promising separates- square wool coats, raw edged flared shorts and metallic jacquard pants. The collection, however mostly banked on the unfussy vibe which Comey has mastered- whether for the slightly tulip shaped skirt tucking in a baggy top or the pale pink pantsuit which belonged to the sets of Annie Hall.