See part I
See New York
Always subdued and a constant exercise in focus is what springs to mind when reflecting on the Bottega label. Fall 2014 is serving up shapes that hug a woman's body in all the right places and in an enveloping way, as opposed to suffocating (read: not bodycon). Tomas Maier's idea of femininity is a ladylike affair and I have yet to see him stray from that genre, this time around introducing jewel colors, the idea of geometry and pretty, floaty folded chiffon. Elegance at its finest.
Unapologetic sexiness is always at the forefront of a Peter Dundas for Pucci collection. The man isn't afraid to have his girl show some leg, even in the middle of winter, and more power to him. After all, the Pucci label was for the jet set vacationer who didn't necessarily suffer through cold weather, when you think about it. Regardelss of that somewhat obvious fact, this time around, the Scandinavian designer brought his A+ game, not eschewing cold-weather favorites, even cranking on outerwear: colossal furs, oversized knitwear and parkas, buttery suedes and plush velvets. While the quintessential Pucci print held a strong supporting role throughout, the always impressive use of byzantine appliqués alongside skinny suits and golden gowns was quick to outshine (pun intended) the familiar patterns. This collection had the signature of a very confident designer, and rightfully so.
When Raf Simons left Jil Sander, I almost cried. It was one of those heartbreaking fashion moments that had me reeling in joy at the thought of what he was going to do next (mission fabulous: accomplished) and conflicted by the extraordinary sadness I felt by seeing one of my favorite designers walk away from a label he had become revered for making his own. No matter, he went on to more genius at Dior, but I digress. Jil Sander went back to Jil Sander (for the 3rd time, no less, and it wasn't the charm) and mere 2 1/2 years later, there she went again. Who knows what really happened, but if fashion had anything to say about it, it was most probably very dramatic (don't you just savor that thought?). All this to say that the Jil Sander collection for fall winter 2014 was not designed by a creative director, but by the in-house design team. I don't care what anybody says, and my opinion might not mirror the fash pack's, but I thoroughly enjoyed it. The clothes were incredibly simple and the soft palette of pastels throughout made me want to catch butterflies in the snow, no mind that it resembled the merch on the COS sales floor more than that at a high-end fashion boutique. If this blogger had the budget, she'd definitely be buying.
One of the reasons for my great interest in Tod's ready-to-wear is my eagerness to watch the direction in which Alessandra Facchinetti's sophomore effort is going. In the right one, it appears. It took the designer a long time to find her way, with two unsuccessful runs in years past, first at Gucci and then as Valentino Garavani's first successor. It seems that she has finally hit her stride at Tod's and it's a beautiful thing to watch -- her designs are the glowing image of perfect at the leather goods classicist label. Naturally, the use of leather was liberal and the modern shapes, fresh palette and geometric prints were all contributing factors to winning my affections.
Donatella keeps elevating Versace to new heights, never failing to stir up brand new ideas for the medusa-logoed Italian house. With the sex appeal volume always on the highest gear, for fall 2014, she tried her hand at one of the hardest things to master: the bias cut. The suits were sharp and tailored (to perfection) close to the body and the outerwear had a definitive wild west energy: tassels, suede, pants melting into chaps. But the slinky stuff was all cut on the bias. The colors also had an interesting appeal: it was black, white, red and a petrol blue, seeing as the latter two were unfamiliar on the Versace runway. The use of buttons and epaulettes punctuated the collection throughout with a military connotation, as well as an ultra-femme sergeant pepper.