March 11, 2013

Fall/Winter 2013 RTW

It's time to accept I need to make some changes to the way I do my Fashion Week Marathons, which obviously haven't been happening at all. I can't do justice to collections without proper comprehensive reviews, yet at the same time, I have so little time to allot to blogging now that I rather condense my thoughts than not get my thoughts out at all (I would burst without somewhere to vent my opinions, so thank you Red-Soled Fashionista for saving me from fashion angst). As you can see, I've also changed up the design of my blog a little. You might recall I said that I've always cared more about the content of my blog than its design, and trust me, that hasn't changed! But now that I've acquired Photoshop skills that I didn't have two years ago, it's time for my blog to reflect my growth. So here's another way I'm reflecting the change in my lifestyle: my Fall/Winter 2013 RTW summary. I'm forgoing the naive years when I typed out detailed collection reviews, and sharing with you my quick thoughts on standout collections:

Bambi at Givenchy, ladies and gents. I love it.  I don't generally squeal like a little girl over cute cartoons, but this is different. Bambi grunge is how the cool girls do it.  Beyond the Bambi print, it was really the oversized sweater and sheer skirt combos that I found to be so appealing. Give me any of the sweaters from the collection, seriously, any!  This collection was rich with textures and prints, and the deconstructed peplums kicked the prim and proper ones of yester-season out of the spotlight. The last time I fell for a RTW collection from Givenchy was Spring/Summer 2012, so this collection is very exciting. Judging from the loud cheers from the audience, I think they would agree.

Watch the full show here.

I, among many others, was quite anxious to see what the newly appointed Alexander Wang would make of Balenciaga. Now that I've seen his first collection, however, I am slightly less enthused. The overall silhouettes were simple and underwhelming, but don't get me wrong, I do see potential. The construction was impressive, with pinched shoulders and "unzipped" backs that looked as if they might slip right off, but at the same time, were extremely sturdy. For the arbiter of New York street fashion to suddenly take the reins of a prestigious couture house takes time. I applaud Wang for showing us his versatility - his ability to rise up to changing expectations - for I didn't catch much of his own aesthetic in these clothes. I believe he will adapt to the Balenciaga brand, and once he does, he will experiment to great effect.

Watch the full show here.

Louis Vuitton
It took me a while to get into this collection, but looking back, I appreciate it so much. This collection was rich with undertones, so excuse me if I ramble on in awe. Firstly, the silky slips peeping out from mannish coats - the sexual tension could not be more palpable. It wasn't tacky in any way though; this was a woman of composure, stalking the streets with her supple leather bags and hems lightly dusted with sequins. But at the same time, this was not a woman of complete power. There was a hint of shame as she walked the streets of night back home. What happened, we wonder, behind those closed hotel doors? Her face was void of light, and even the music, however beautiful, was disconcerting. This was Marc Jacob's most provocative show yet, despite its muted demeanor. Luckily, Jacobs drew us from our melancholy contemplation by taking a bow in a set of red pajamas. The message of the show: our most intimate moments.

Watch the full show here.

Oscar de la Renta
So many things to touch on in this collection! My first thoughts as the show started actually had nothing to do with the clothes. It was "Oh my gosh, it's Jeanne Beker front row!", then "Ah, there's Bill Cunningham across from her! Aww he's smiling."  And then I noticed what they were both smiling at: a turquoise bar jacket ensemble. Wait, did I say bar jacket?  Yes, because guess who was backstage?  None other than John Galliano, who Oscar de la Renta invited last month to be a designer-in-residence. We assume he pitched into this collection, as there were definitely hints of signature Galliano. If we focus on just de la Renta for a second, I would like to say that this collection was a complete relief for me. For the past couple of seasons, de la Renta has unsuccessfully tried to appeal to a younger market with messy modifications to his otherwise clean design talent. This season, it was finally back to what de la Renta does best. Now if we focus on Galliano, I could almost cry. I've been so deprived of Galliano's designing that this collection is like a gem to me. However, if we take de la Renta and Galliano together, the collection ultimately becomes a slightly confusing, disjointed compilation. But under the circumstances, I can let that pass.

Watch the full show here.

Marchesa used to be one of the collections I most looked forward to. Every look used to be so flawless and stunning that I even dreamed of wearing a Marchesa dress to grad. I adored their romantic touches, exquisite construction, and at times, hauntingly ethereal dresses. Nonetheless, lately, Marchesa has taken a turn for the worse. Ever since Spring/Summer 2012, when Georgina Chapman and Keren Craig ditched their beautiful fashion presentations for runway shows, their designs have strangely also gone in decline. Spring 2012 and Fall 2012 were still quite striking, even if less intriguing. In Spring 2013, the decline was more obvious - an unappealing attempt at mashing all the decorations of India into short dresses and pants (pants at Marchesa??), or exaggerating their opulence into Hollywood gowns. And here we are a Fall 2013, where the draping has gone haywire, bunching at the most unflattering of places. The construction is messy, and all I can do is describe this collection in one word: wrinkled. There was at most a total of three good looks - much fewer than there used to be.

See the entire collection here.

That is surprisingly all for now! There are a large number of shows this season that aren't posted on Youtube in HD, and I never watch clips unless it covers the full show and it's in good quality. Otherwise, you fail to get a solid understanding of the collection, and you end up missing out on a lot of fascinating details if a blurry model walks past you at 360p or 480p. Marchesa is obviously the exception here, as I couldn't help but say something about the collection. More to come if I find myself itching to become vocal again about Fall/Winter 2013, and as always, I welcome any requests for collection reviews!

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