Sunday, June 30, 2013

Saint Laurent spring men's 2014

Just when you think things couldn’t get any worse here comes Hedi!
Here’s, the deal, there are tons of jackets and hopefully some real pants as opposed to second skin tights like runway pants.  If the samples shown the run are of commercial size then anyone above a size 40 is S.O.L.

The roach picker shoes are almost comical as is Mr. Slimane’s vision which borders on comic strip like if not just plain absurd.  Unless of course he was going for the John Travolta, Vinny Barbarino look.  Let’s now step back to look at the pants or better referred to as legwear as most grown men will not be jamming their legs into these.  The slicked back punkish hair and the greasy bandana certainly all make a pretty picture of some strung out anorexic boy who can afford to wear $5000 worth of clothes to look like a street urchin! We can also point out that there is nothing attractive about pants pulled up to high and cinched at the waist.

One more time, H&M, Zara and forever 21 must be wringing their collective hands to start their spring production based on these ever so tasteful pieces of fine European fashion.
Kering and Mr. Slimane can pat each other on the back for destroying one of the most revered, legendary and iconic brands of the 20th century.  Mr. Berge, I dare you to say this is very YSL and if you do, you deserve never to join him.   

If the whole production wasn’t so insulting, it would be absolutely comical.

Thom Browne spring 2014.. MEN'S

This cannot be approached as a real collection, no matter its true intent.  The Spring collection by Thom Browne needs to be spoken about on several levels so here goes…

As far as technical workmanship and abilities, it doesn’t get much better than this.  As far as designing, this cannot be considered other than if these are costumes for some sort of theater production and not the theater of fashion!  There is no commercial factor even if dissected so that part is out of the question.

There is a disturbing quality about the presentation which keeps gnawing at me and that is the Night Porter and Nazi overtones that Mr. Brown has evoked.  Complicating matters even further is the gender bending of wartime Berlin that permeates the collection which all adds up to a disturbing “big picture.”
Theatrically it is brilliant, the imagination is disturbingly perverse, and the inspiration and reasons are inconsequential as really who cares?  Let the paid critics intellectualize and try to convince  the reader that this collection means anything or really matters ... for me...  it’s nothing more than shock value for the sake of shock… MISSION ACCOMPLISHED!

Lanvin spring men's 2014

Within a minute of the opening of this show, one almost immediately knew that change was afoot.  Mr. Ossendrijver, under the watchful eye of Alber Elbaz, delivered a sterling collection … once you got beyond the obvious attention grabbing  ploy of using not just shorts, but short shorts or maybe one might say … HOT PANTS!

Lanvin Spring 2014 is the perfect example of having to dissect what you are shown and think of each part of an exit as an individual piece… in essence, the whole is only equal to the sum of its parts, but each part is an entity unto itself! that???

The collection offers multiple viewpoints on what will be considered fashionable and trend worthy for the season whether it be any of the many jacket silhouettes or pants or shirts and well... even shorts!  It is clear that volume is being toyed with from the single pleat full legged pant to the cinched waisted trenches to the varying degrees of fit when it comes to tailored jackets.  For these eyes, the only silhouette that looks out of place here is the very abbreviated fitted shapes that mercifully were not in abundance.

Not only was the designer tossing out “volumetrics,” he was also tossing out textures from wools to jerseys to eye clips (Google it) to even a touch here and there of lame or patent.  Personally, the collection was just beautiful in terms of breadth, palette, shapes and proportion.

Once again, this is a collection that was filled with swagger and slick, not to mention, once again, N U A N C E … put it all together you have NUANCE and if you can’t guess the definition, then by all means look it up!!  This is why only a few designers design and the rest get inspired by others.
Lanvin stands out from the oceans of sameness and forges a path that one can only hope will be adhered to in coming seasons.

P.S. if you need it spelled out, then have a look at the invisible closures on the jackets, the cutaway shape of the jackets, the pant lengths and most of all …the options!

Hermes men's spring 2014

When one already possesses the world’s most discerning customers, a brand no longer must compete; all they need to do is evolve.  And, this would be the story of Hermes who showed the world of men’s fashion that men can be wildly tasteful without any gimmicks, sight gags or screaming patterns or colors.

Ms. Nichanian displayed a collection filled with the confidence, of hers and her customers, that reads like a Pulitzer Prize piece of journalism.  The elegantly tasteful and discreet seasonal offering provides enough options for men of any age … and I am sure plenty of women as well … who, if they can afford it, will fill their wardrobes with it.

Ms. Nichanian creates a train of thought that, maybe, we need more women designing men’s collections!  She massaged the trends added nuance and the end result was so under the radar chic and slick that one needs to ask ….why does everyone else try so hard when it is this easy?

Even the “genetic” Hermes prints were incorporated in ways that are so toned down as that they may have gone undetected … and that kids is nuance and brilliant!  Yes, slim is in but look at how this is done, look at the pant length, the evocative nature of every look, the overall elegance all of it totals to a way of life rather than just an outfit.

From shoes to knits to scarves to an out of the blue coverall to the giant linen Birkin, no stone has been left unturned and rakish sophistication ruled the day … blessedly so!

P.S.  and imagine this .. only a pair of shorts and only one bare chest to achieve an end result that most would “kill for”

Saturday, June 29, 2013

Dior Homme spring 2014

This is Dior Homme which has already been reimagined by Hedi Slimane and now by its present carrier of the torch, Kris Van Assche.  The process started by Hedi was at first revolutionary and by now, Mr. Van Assche’s collections are part of the new image and look so much more evolutionary than revolutionary.

The clothes are skewed to young men and women who require an edge in their apparel and not a screaming look at me approach to fashion. They also require a very healthy allowance, trust fund or executive position. To my eye, the shorts are bit too prevalent, but I do like the abbreviated squared off jacket/blazer.  The palette seems to be a bit too victim being so dark and moody but one can see the beautiful edge that the clothes have which is provided by the fine tailoring.

The Mondrainaesque design flourish is interesting but it certainly is not very new on so many levels.  Personally, the sleeveless suit is a favorite of mine, but that’s a highly personal choice.  What is so odd is that this collection, which has been so totally recast as a very young man’s collection, started out as a very older man’s collection that far outlived the design of its counterpart in ladies.

My take is that Mr. Van Assche has studiously developed his customer and rather than toss him/her away every season for some of the moment craze, he keeps them coming back to see the newest design FLOURISHES of the season.  If you recall, the words used are NUANCE and a massaged trend!

So… love it? …. NO! … Hate it? … NO!  But … there are plenty of pieces to fall in like with, which is far more than one can say about so many of the new collections that have been presented during the past few weeks.