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Fall 2011 RTW: Trends from Paris

25 Mar

Many of the NYFW trends were pervasive throughout the month of shows — minimalism, the seventies and retro prints…They are fun to look at but pretty much remain constant throughout each reinterpretation. There are only so many ways to do minimalism. Paris brought a whole new theme to the FW11 trends though and they were really interesting ideas.

First we have the full-body print. What I love about this is how in spite of using the same print for each piece (dresses don’t count), there is a lot of different and change within the look. What I mean is, when you wear a two-piece hot pink look the meat of the outfit is the pink — the bold color choice — not the pieces themselves. When you add the pattern to the mix it transforms into something else. The pattern is just as important as the pieces. You can’t layer the same pattern with any pattern — it takes a stylistic eye and a real knack for fashion to see what looks chic and amazing as opposed to looking like a juicy tracksuit. The Celine piece has that wooden pattern with the nude turtleneck as the only distracting element but it adds to the look. I just think this entire concept is fascinating and so hard to do (trust me, I’ve been trying). Even the Givenchy look with the cuffed sleeves like from Varsity jackets (I’m blanking on the term — it is only 9 AM though) gives the entire look a retro vibe. It manages to remain chic and inspirational while giving a nod to this very outdated look.

A reinvention of structure was really big in Paris this year. It manifested itself into two categories in my opinion — there was the boxy structure (an infusion of masculine if you will) and the creative structure (à la McQueen kind of thing, I’ll get to that in a bit). Here we have the boxy kind. This is something that is on the runway every once in awhile (flashback to Margiela’s Spring 2011 collection) and is generally applause worthy but pretty unwearable. This season there was a breakthrough with this style. McCartney did it the best in my opinion — she puffed up the sleeves and boxed out the style but kept the waist feminine and skirt flattering. It takes a balance to not look boxy and unflattering — herein lies my fascination with fashion, the dichotomy between something completely new and outstanding while still remaining beautiful and graceful on the body. In some cases it is impossible but when it’s done right it is just truly awe inspiring. Gaultier took a different route with the outerwear — my friend argued that I was stretching it a bit but I don’t think so. This jacket really dominates with the unusual structure and reminds me a lot of the Burberry Prorsum Pre-Fall coat that has the same structural ingenuity. It’s the opposite of the McCartney dress in terms of the balance between modern and new and flattering — the top is  feminine with the fur and the quilting but then puffs out to a kind of hoop skirt around the waist. It’s amazing. YSL had an innovation that a few others felt inspired by as well which is just the entire boxy dress. I love this idea because by keeping it a mini they are free to do what they will with the above. This season is where designers stumbled upon the realization that they can contrast the beauty of the body with the intensity of this boxy style they’ve toyed with for years — it’s like when my mom said to me, “yes, by all means where a mens shirt if you’d like but you have to wear something tight on the bottom.” It’s intuitive to a woman — hide one area, you got to flaunt the other.

There’s really not much to say about Peplums except that they were just absolutely everywhere. I love them and they’re flattering in their own strange way.

Ok so there’s not much one can say about these because they are so individual to the designer, but these three stood out to me (from many). This is a staple of the McQueen collections and one that Burton is so skilled at it is practically indistinguishable from McQueen himself. I can never forget the intensity and just absolutely stunning quality of the closing look from the Spring collection. Viktor & Rolf’s entire collection wasn’t really my pace but I admire it none the less. It was medieval and renaissance but there wasn’t a lot of variation within the theme. The Yamamoto show was deadly amazing and I love this and the symbolism of it. The deconstruction of fashion and the deterioration of the business is really a big theme with the grunge pervasive this season. I love these and I love this entire style it really is evidence within itself of just pure, raw talent.


Stella McCartney Fall 2011 Runway Review

Celine Fall 2011 Runway Review

Givenchy Fall 2011 Runway Review

Jean Paul Gaultier Fall 2011 Runway Review

Yves Saint Laurent Fall 2011 Runway Review

Miu Miu Fall 2011 Runway Review

Alexander McQueen Fall 2011 Runway Review

Viktor & Rolf Fall 2011 Runway Review


Fall 2011 RTW: Shoes, Shoes, Shoes…

17 Mar

So many killer pumps with such a retro feel — the really thick heel is back in a big way and I love the way it was reinvented. So many killer styles but there were some amazing pieces. There was way more snakeskin than usual but the colors and use was definitely unusual and so killer. Lots of booties and wedges, lot of modernism. The Louis Vuitton pumps with the cute little white bow straps were my absolute favorites though in the entire season. They’re on point with the time and simple, classic, feminine… What are your top picks?


Fall 2011 RTW: Elie Saab

10 Mar

Honestly, any influence Saab had is only minimally evident in his collections which are mainly in the same vein each season. Saab has really made a huge name for himself. He is a real player in the couture game and is worn on the red carpet constantly. His designs inspire beauty and are amazing. I’m pretty saddened by the end of fashion week and so worn out by this week that I don’t have a lot to say. Saab’s collections are simple in their ideas — the floral piece is just to die for and definitely outside of Saab’s realm of usual suspects. Prints are unusual in his collections and this was just dreamy. There were also playsuits that were beautiful but not made with the same craft and skill that Saab has with gowns. A beautiful and magical end to fashion week.



Elie Saab Spring Couture 2011 Runway Review

Elie Saab Spring 2011 Runway Review

Fall 2011 RTW: Miu Miu

10 Mar

Miu Miu took a huge time machine back to the 40’s and delivered fabulous show. There were peplums and drop-waisted dresses with fun, retro patterns. The cuts were flattering and brought an edge to the vintage looks. The collection was so elegant and beautiful — by far the most complete and whole. Not a look was out-of-place and Prada stuck with the period throughout the collection in a way that is definitely difficult with really thick and heavy ideas. The aspects of these looks that I hated in their respective time period were missing and had a more modern edge now. It was brilliant and beautiful. The front row was filled with glamorous celebrities and the word on the street about this show was just so glowing. It was well done.


Fall 2011 RTW: Valentino

9 Mar

Valentino has had a real whirlwind time on the red carpet. The brand is experiencing a real revitalization with the new designers and I love it. While the cuts and ideas, the soul of the collection, was true Valentino and felt like Garavino’s own designs, there was a modern infusion in the patterns and some of the embellishing. The rose buds stuck by Valentino’s completely feminine feel and were beautiful as they lined some tops, dresses and skirts — although rarely at the same time. The bow’s were still ever-present but much sexier than in past collections — such as the sheer top with the giant black bow was so sexy and beautiful. The floor length dress is amazing and I can picture it on Welch, totally her style. The way the florals are and the lines and geometry in bolder colors were really unusual, especially from Valentino. There was a very obvious absence of the Valentino red in this collection was odd but it was not bad. It was a beautiful collection, as usual.



Valentino Spring Couture 2011 Runway Review

Valentino Pre-Fall 2011 Collection Review

Anne Hathaway in Valentino Couture at the Academy Awards

Fall 2011 RTW: Louis Vuitton

9 Mar

I was so geared up to love this show — I saw all of the comments about Marc Jacobs feelings on how fashion is an obsession and a fetish and how this inspired him and I was just already in love with the show. He brought back Kate Moss — who has not been on a runway since 2004 — and Naomi Campbell, to close out his show. Yet in spite of all of these amazing things I really hated the collection. I understood the intention and the farce meant to be inherent behind the clothing themselves. It just did not work. There was not a single piece that I thought looked good on the model. There were hot pants, hot pants, hot pants and then equestrian style pants with emphasized hips — literally, the only people these would look good on are those with hips that size. They crinkle and bunch on the model in such an unflattering way. The prints were boring and the furs were interesting but just not 100%, or even 70% ok. Each look was accompanied with a bag (of course) to signal the heritage of the line…A nice throwback to the big Vuitton himself. With the stunning shows that Jacobs produced in New York what is now weeks ago, I expected more. But three perfect collections would be unbelievable, right?


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Emma Stone at the Louis Vuitton Fall 2011 Show

Fall 2011 RTW: Alexander McQueen

9 Mar

Burton has so completely taken over McQueen and encompassed his designs and vision that I really feel as if he were still alive. While many designers work from the original designers past collections — she is not basing things off it, she shares the exact same vision. She is like a reincarnation of the King himself. She used an old venue of McQueens — La Conciergerie, Marie Antonette’s prison and McQueen’s FW 2002 show where he lined the runway with wolves. Burton used what she called, “Heritage silhouettes,” essentially worked from McQueen’s past pieces. These were beautiful in such a scary and harsh way that is typical of McQueen. I also can identify his pieces because they remind me of birds — the way that the feathers and the structure feel so innate to the woman wearing it. There was a lot of roughness in this collection and bondage that did not do it for me but McQueen always had that rough edge to him. The end was a series of just such beautiful white dresses — really fueling the rumor that Burton is designing Kate Middleton’s wedding dress. They were so elegant and so beautiful. The detail shots of these pieces were amazing — each stitch was intentional and I can only imagine the hours it must have taken to nail everything down correctly. Burton and McQueen work perfectly together — the ideal collection. Oh, and of course — the shoes are ALWAYS to die for.



Alexander McQueen Spring 2011 Runway Review

Fall 2011 RTW: Chanel

8 Mar

I may be committing sin in the fashion world, blaspheming the name of the god of fashion, but this Chanel collection was not it for me. Lagerfeld went all out — as is to be expected — and not in the midst of a real, gigantic glacier this collection took place in front of a volcano. Not a real one of course — although the soot and gravel that surrounded the runway was smoking and steaming as if it were. This set the stage for what was a very grim show. This entire collection reminded me of Lord of the Rings — although Lagerfeld would never admit it if that were his true influence — so gaudy for the king. It was the jackets that did it for me though — so ethereal yet grim, with the real weighted down feeling that is so glamorous and exotic. I would kill for some of these coats. After the coats, though, the collection went downhill to me. This is when Lagerfeld played with the menswear trend (and not for his men’s collection). In the Chanel styles and materials, the tweed looked wrong in this style and it looked so heavy. Even as mens clothes I would not be a fan of these. There were some huge dress mistakes — namely that there were only two or three. A huge selection of play suits though. The play suits were so masculine though — even when done in lace. I am usually entranced by the Chanel collections, but here I wasn’t. The Valli and Givenchy shows blew me away in a way that this one just did not. The torn and tattered bit worked really well the past few collections for Chanel, but I think it was pushed one season too far and just a little bit too much toward an extreme.



Chanel Spring Runway Review

Chanel Spring Couture 2011 Runway Review

Fall 2011 RTW: Emanuel Ungaro

8 Mar

“I dress mistresses, not wives” Ungaro once said — leading to the inspiration of the current designer, Giles Deacon. These were some pretty hot pieces. Apart from the printed knits and the shapeless school girls outfits, there were sexy gowns. There were some really fabulous pieces in this collection though, immersed in a lot of “eh” ones.



Emanuel Ungaro Spring 2011 Runway Review

Fall 2011 RTW: John Galliano

8 Mar

Clearly, there has been a lot of turmoil surrounding this collection the past few weeks. I was not even going to post about it and didn’t even want to look at it — I don’t know where I stand on this situation and I try not to get involved. If those were his true feelings than I am horrified and disgusted but if it was a situation taken out of context then who am I to judge. Many in the fashion community have spoken out on behalf of Galliano and I do not believe it is something they would have done and risked their reputations if they did not truly believe. I am half jewish myself and while I do not practice, it is part of my history but my family makes jokes about our heritage and stereotypes all the time — it is important to find humor in everything so as to not get defeated by life.

On to the collection — it was beautiful. Whether or not this is a last collection, it certainly would be a really high point to go out on. There was such immense beauty and care in each piece and such intricate designs and patterns. The last piece, the killer one in my view — the emerald silk and embroidered piece, that’s just amazing. I mean, I could literally stare at it for hours. I’ve looked at all the detailed shots over and over and I just want to touch it and experience it not-virtually. The white fur coat with the high collar — like, literally, high collar — was brilliant, and so practical. Why this wasn’t pervasive on these runways especially with the winter that we have had I don’t know. I just loved this. Galliano really is a genius when it comes to fashion — and while I see Lagerfeld as overstepping a bit with his analogy to McQueen, I agree that a true innovative and creative fashion mind that can create such masterpieces is really rare.