Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Burberry Prorsum resort 2016

While not being a huge fan of Christopher Bailey, but in an effort to give credit where credit is due, he has delivered some amazing collections. What is bothersome to me, besides him being very over rated, is that the collections bear no continuity other than the ubiquitous trench coat. It might be said that it is the last shred of the original DNA of the brand other than the plaid.

Resort 2016 plays right into what has become the M O for the brand and so many other heritage brands and that is simply presenting collections of clothes ... nondescript unidentifiable clothes whose only purpose is to fill the racks for that particular season. There is no more instant recognition here as there has been no effort from the brand’s design team to develop one.

Yes, the clothes are pretty, as well they should be considering the prices. Yes the animal prints have become somewhat of a signature but they could be attributed to anyone. What is most outstanding is that Bailey has truly massaged the trench coat in the most beautiful and skilled ways. This season, without doubt, the heavy lace trenches are just sublime as well as one “hairy” animal print version … wearable? ... well who knows and who cares.. they are exquisite. All the simple shaped silhouettes show off the incredible fabrications, combinations and permutations of lace in its many forms. What evades me is that other than models who are paid to wear these clothes or the gals who are given these clothes ... who is buying them and where are they wearing them?

What one must credit Bailey, Bravo and Ahrendts with the company developing a HUGE accessory business and that alone might be what supports the marquee category, let alone resuscitated the sleepy brand. In essence, Burberry will always be about trench coat and plaid no matter what comes down that runway season after season. It saddens me that these  great “blue blood”  brands lose sight of who and why they become iconic, yes, yes I am aware that times change and brands must evolve to survive but why always take the easiest path and that is to ignore the history and create a new visual vocabulary which unfortunately  is no longer brand specific.

Yes, the collection is appealing to a very narrow audience, the accessories are very commercial and yet I say so what?