Fashion Over Reason: February 2014

Thursday, February 27, 2014

Long Lines

Disclaimer: this photo is from before my mane transformation, clearly. Now that that's out of the way, I just wanted to take a small break from posting about fashion month since it feels like any sort of outfit post was many moons ago. And it's alway good to switch it up, am I right? So today I'm discussing the lines of an outfit: there's something about playing with proportions that is always really interesting and appealing to me. It's a way to stand out and to think outside the style box, if you will. Sometimes, non-traditional shapes or pairings can make for the most surprising, not to mention stylish, combo.

You see a lot of fashion muses these days experimenting with variations of that, like Yasmin Sewell, Taylor Tomasi Hill, Columbine Smille... It's a nice break from the norm and it lays the groundwork for more personality and less conventionality. It's also a way to make a monochromatic sombre palette, like mine yonder, feel a little more exciting.

Fashion Over Reason selfie, Club Monaco long grey overcoat, Helmut Lang black voile dress, Alexander Wang Anouck boots
Details:
Coat - Club Monaco (similar)
Dress - Helmut Lang
Boots - Alexander Wang

Click to shop:

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

MFW FW14 - III

Alright folks, this post rounds out my Milan fashion week coverage and up next is the holy grail of the month: Paris! What did you think of the Italian collections? Do you have a favorite fashion week thus far? Do tell! Oh, and if you ever want to sift through the collections but want to go easy on the clicks, head over to my FW14 Pinterest board for the consolidated, full roundup.

See part II
See part I
See London 
See New York

Alberta Ferretti

The woman had fairy tales on her mind, there is no mistaking that. It was as though she had taken a stroll through the forest and all of the little animals became animated and started singing to her. Some of it was a bit too literal for me, while most of it was quite enchanting indeed.

Alberta Ferretti fall winter 2014 runway collection, FW14, AW14, MFW, Milan fashion week

Dolce & Gabbana

Stefano and Domenico, too, had an enchanted forest on the brain, it would seem. There was a lot of animal character patchwork, as well as fauna depicted on a number of looks. It had whimsicality and folklore appeal, but certain pieces looked a bit crafty, in my humble opinion. However, the theme was well-explored. Their more ornate looks rounded out the spellbinding factor and their floaty maxis gave it some lightness. A Dolce collection could never be devoid of sensuality and luxe, and there was still plenty of it for fall 2014, no matter how "innocent" the collection might have come off at first glance.
Dolce & Gabbana fall winter 2014 runway collection, FW14, AW14, MFW, Milan fashion week


Giorgio Armani

There is no better neutral than grey in my books. Apparently, Mr. Armani agrees with me: every look that strutted down his fall 2014 catwalk marched to the beat of a shade of grey. The Giorgio Armani line is a behemoth when it comes to offering sartorial choices to the power woman, which he continued to prove with this collection. And with a non-color like grey, everything goes, even the ever-so-unconventional lime. It was like the lady with the corner office decided to play hookie and let loose, without losing control or focus. Only Armani...

Giorgio Armani fall winter 2014 runway collection, FW14, AW14, MFW, Milan fashion week


Marni

Behold everybody: Marni's fall 2014 offerings were nothing short of a tour de force! The very distinctive Marni quirk injected throughout made for the ideal balance of fashion-forward, wearable and crafted to perfection in every which seam. There were unpredictable details, funky shapes, as well as interesting additions that encompassed that familiar line between the beautiful and the strange: Consuelo Castiglioni's specialty.

Marni fall winter 2014 runway collection, FW14, AW14, MFW, Milan fashion week


Max Mara

What comes to mind when thinking about Max Mara is a beautifully tailored camel coat. Well, ladies and gents, no signs of that classic image for fall 2014, but there were plenty of beautiful outerwear options for the Max Mara devotee. It is precisely for collections like these that I favor the fall season over spring in terms of fashion: the fabrics and shapes are simply impossible to compete with, it's just no fair. This time around, beautiful sharp tweeds were introduced, made incredibly modern thanks to cocooning shapes, oversized options and complimented by covetable gold flats. Bank account permitting, I'd be lining up out their door come fall. 

MaxMara fall winter 2014 runway collection, FW14, AW14, MFW, Milan fashion week


Missoni

I'm not gonna sugar-coat this one: I was not particularly into Missoni this season. The collection did not resonate with me at all and it just lacked any sort of cool factor to me. Ever the optimist, I did find certain pieces to be somewhat compelling thanks to interesting layers and textures -- after all, I am a big knitwear fan. Some of Angela's outerwear was fun and I have to say I was a big fan of the shoes. I'm kind of a sucker for ostrich print. 

Missoni fall winter 2014 runway collection, FW14, AW14, MFW, Milan fashion week


[all runway images via style.com]

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

MFW FW14 - II

I mentioned yesterday that the Italians do refined opulence like nobody else can. But I forgot to mention that they also do sexy in a way that cannot be rivaled anywhere else, whether it's more in-your-face (Versace, Pucci, Cavalli) or understated (Bottega, Armani, Prada). It's always interesting to see where young designers who helm a storied fashion house with a very ingrained sensibility will take the brand. Below, we find out where some of them go for fall 2014...


See part I
See London
See New York


Bottega Veneta

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.

Bottega Veneta fall winter 2014 runway collection, Tomas Maier, FW14, AW14, MFW, Milan fashion week


Emilio Pucci

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.

Emilio Pucci by Peter Dundas fall winter 2014 runway collection, FW14, AW14, MFW, Milan fashion week


Jil Sander

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.

Jil Sander fall winter 2014 runway collection, FW14, AW14, MFW, Milan fashion week


Tod's

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.

Tod's by Alessandra Facchinetti fall winter 2014 runway collection, FW14, AW14, MFW, Milan fashion week


Versace

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.

Versace fall winter 2014 runway collection, FW14, AW14, MFW, Milan fashion week, Donatella Versace
[all runway images via style.com]

Monday, February 24, 2014

MFW FW14 - I

Ahhh the Italians... ever so regal and luxurious. The designers of Milan fashion week sure know how to crank up the fashion heat. I've previously mentioned that New York is known for its wearable, pragmatic approach, whereas London is famous for being an incubator for newbies and churning out prodigious creativity. Meanwhile, the fine folks in Italy are the ones who give us opulence and grandeur without fail -- and they haven't let us down for fall winter 2014. Let's get started!

See London
See New York

Etro

Etro is known for its ethnic-like boho design sensibility and for next fall, the label did not hold back on reeling us into their world of rich textiles, painting the kind of portrait only Veronica Etro knows how to. This collection really, really appealed to me. It was fit for the finest young boho socialite of the gypset, or even better: rock royalty progeny being their most [normal] fabulous self picking up some flowers at the market (or better, yet, the souk) on a saturday morning. It was layers upon layers of shimmering silks, beautiful embroidered dresses, flowing maxis, knee-high suede boots, and for less temperate weather: cozy oversized plaid ponchos and throws, as well as chubby, fluffy furs. This kind of aesthetic has a gravitational pull on me, it is beyond my control.

Etro fall winter 2014 runway collection, Veronica Etro, FW14, AW13, MFW, Milan fashion week, boho, gypsy, gypset


Fendi

You'd be hard-pressed to find anyone who wouldn't mind being snuggled into that ginormous fur hood Karl sent Cara down the runway with to open to show (and other iterations later on). You knew this was going to have the Karl stamp of cheekiness when she carried a furry doll of the man himself in said look 1. The way he mixes the house's fur DNA all the while taking the opportunity to play with shapes and proportions has somewhat become what I come to expect anticipate seeing on a Fendi catwalk. The outerwear was impossibly beautiful and encompassed many of the trends we've seen emerge from this fashion month: abstract prints, collage patchwork, coats galore, midi skirt, the galaxy (no Star Wars print here, but a starry universe print and, um, drones in the atmosphere, literally). These were clothes you wanted to go places in and the juxtaposition of light -- flowers, mesh, see-throughness -- and heavy -- furs, layers, parkas, boxiness -- was what you wanted to wear on your way there.

Fendi fall winter 2014 runway collection, Karl Lagerfeld, Silvia Venturini Fendi, FW14, AW14, MFw, Milan fashion week


Gucci

The Gucci girl has gone mod for fall 2014! This collection referenced the 60s in an incredibly fresh way and in a palette that felt oh so modern: buttery camels, moss greens, dusty blues and pinks, subdued mustards. The shapes were fully swinging London, yet the vibe was very now, with beautiful soft leathers exuding that Gucci sexiness. The sensual quality was subtle, however, thanks to the plays with textures and the integration of denim. Frida Giannini made us long for pea coats and introduced a casual chic way to don fur that the girl of today will adopt in a heartbeat, not to mention those skinny suits and those a m a z i n g boots. My favorite Friday Giannini Gucci collection ever, if I may be so bold.

Gucci fall winter 2014 runway collection, FW14, AW14, MFW, Milan fashion week, Frida Giannini


No. 21

Alessandro Dell'Acqua's No. 21 label has been a very successful extension of his namesake label since he launched it back in 2010. That classic Italian fusion of upscale and extravagant is how I would describe this label: he stays clean with his designs, but they look lavish and unique. This collection seemed to straddle the masculine-feminine line. I liked it.

No. 21 by Alessandro Dell'Acqua fall winter 2014 runway collection, FW14, AW14, MFW, Milan fashion week


Prada

A Prada collection is always so fascinating, if only because of Miuccia's approach. It's now a pretty well-known fact that her method of madness starts with something she hates and she riffs on it until she likes it. How brilliant is that? She's also one of the industry's most cerebral designers and she brings a refreshing intellectualism to her process. That said, fall 2014 was not based on one of her dislikes, but on a German avant-garde film director from the early 70s. In a way, this collection was both austere and light. It was dark, there was a haunting german singer providing the soundtrack, it was angular -- square, boxy coats, oversized chevron patterns on knitwear, lines defining the edges of the garments and waists -- the hair was slick and tight, the colors were solid and stark. But there was also a certain softness thanks to sheer dresses, fluffy and mellow Chewbacca furs (again with Star Wars, woof), silk satin flowing dresses. Miuccia knows how to paint a full portrait and take us on a journey, no matter if you like her aesthetic or not.

Prada fall winter 2014 runway collection, FW14, AW14, MFW, Milan fashion week, Miuccia Prada
[all runway images via style.com]

Saturday, February 22, 2014

LFW FW14 - III

Fashion never sleeps, therefore neither do it! Which is precisely why you're probably surprised to see a new post on a Saturday. Seeing as Milan is in full swing, we needed to finalize our London conversations. Here are the final collections from the British capital I deemed worthy to discuss...

See part I
See part II
See NYFW

Christopher Kane

Christopher Kane is such a texture master. His collections are always surprising and have an innate cool to them. Hi shows also always have an interesting duality and this time was no exception: they're both really dressy and awesomely informal; the pieces look extremely luxurious, yet have a casual energy; there was both a heavy and light feel to the whole thing. That folded layered chiffon dress is divine, just watching it move was mesmerizing.

Christopher Kane fall winter 2014 runway collection, FW14, AW14, LFW, London fashion week


Erdem

Erdem is all about elegance, femininity, refinement. For fall, he went dark, with subtle baroque influences, regal brocades and laces, bejeweled appliqués. It was all pretty, pretty, pretty.

Erdem fall winter 2014 runway collection, AW14, FW14, LFW, London fashion week


Simone Rocha

This is a designer who's made major waves on the scene in a very short period of time. For fall 2014, Simone Rocha seemed to have imagined the convergence between victorian exuberance and the world of Malcolm McLaren. The results were pretty fantastic.

Tom Ford fall winter 2014 runway collection, FW14, AW14, LFW, London fashion week


Tom Ford

The maestro of sexiness himself took his buoyancy down a few notches, but that's not to say there was any missing sensuality to his collection. It was like a 60's american girl parade: cool native-inspired mini dress tunics, popping animal prints, fancy cowboy boots. But most importantly, the looks were streamlined, simple, cool and rich. Plus, not pictured here, there was a nod to the king of hip-hop, Mr. Jay Z himself, with sparkly sports jersey shifts.

Tom Ford fall winter 2014 runway collection, FW14, AW14, LFW, London fashion week


Whistles

Whistles is considered high street. I consider it like, high, high street. This is no Topshop or Zara -- not only in terms of price tag, which is certainly a cut above, but the clothes themselves are too (pun intended). Modern girls are going to be all over this collection and they went deep on one of the biggest trends I've examined to have come out of this fashion month thus far: that cubic print was done in soft shades of sea foam green, lilac, aqua blue, grey and chunky oversized knits that you want to live in once it gets cold.

Whistles fall winter 2014 collection presentation, look book, FW14, AW14, LFW, London fashion week


Antonio Berrardi

Sexy shapes, sexy colors, sexy boots. Some of the pieces even had a little bit of a Balmain vibe to them... I'll bet those will become a sensation!

Antonio Berrardi fall winter 2014 runway collection, FW14, AW14, LFW, London fashion week

[all runway images via style.com]

Thursday, February 20, 2014

LFW FW14 - II

More from London, this time looking at the big boss: Burberry, among others. I usually make it a point to watch the live stream, but I was unfortunately indisposed at the time due to a conflicting travel schedule. So instead of getting the full throttle effect with the music (which is always so great), the ambiance and the energy of the crowd, I get to summarize one of the season's most anticipated shows by looking at the runway stills, unfortunately. Anyway, that and more standouts below...

Part I here
NYFW here

Burberry

Is it just me or did this show feel a little more like a spring showing than an autumn one (safe for the closing poncho on miss Delevigne?). Never mind, it was pretty gorgeous regardless -- plus, I am the first one to always drivel on about how stupid season rules are, well, stupid. There was such an artsy, boho vibe to the pieces thanks to delicate hand-painted trench coats and accessories, as well breezy fabrics and silky scarves. Talk about innovating and giving their quintessential garment a whole new life. It was chic and sexy, but in a floaty, airy kind of way. It almost felt more Parisian than British. Sorry, is that blasphemous? My bad.

Burberry Prorsum fall winter 2014 runway collection, FW14, AW14, Christopher Bailey, Cara Delevigne


Giles

Giles Deacon's designs are not for the shrinking violet, he's established that from the beginning. He digs ornamentation and as critics will attest, he does it pretty masterfully. His fall offerings ran the gamut in terms of variety of pieces and the occasions for which to wear them. There were tons of separates this time around, with quilted leather slacks in a bevy of color schemes being particularly strong. In short, this Giles collection had more street cred than his past endeavors.

Giles Deacon fall winter 2014 runway collection, FW14, AW14, LFW, London fashion week


Peter Pilotto

Fresh off the heels of his Target collaboration, Peter Pilotto's brand awareness is climbing up the charts and certainly, he is looking to keep the momentum going. Known for their exuberant prints, the guys behind the label introduced embroidery as another means this time around. Geometry is a very recurring theme this season and the Pilotto woman will have ample choice if she's into parading in abstract cubism prints.

Peter Pilotto fall winter 2014 runway collection, FW14, AW14, LFW, London fashion week


Preen by Thornton Bregazzi

Preen, Preen, Preen. This label's following is akin to cult-like and in the eyes of the believers, they can do no wrong. This time, however, their collection is sure to be polarizing. Preen is the second label this season to draw literal inspiration from the ultimate sci-fi cinematic masterpiece: none other than Star Wars itself. Some of the dresses had actual images of the characters plastered on the from of them, while others were just whimsical and pretty. The use of the color red here (yet another big trend this season) was very successful, especially on the monochrome looks. It was clear that the force was with the Thornton-Bregazzi duo.

Preen by Thornton Bregazzi fall winter 2014 runway collection, FW14, AW14, LFW, London fashion week, Star Wars, geek chic


Pringle of Scotland

Pringle is one of those classic labels that you know will be consistent in giving you what you expect from them, season after season. They always do such a good job with knitwear and this year they cranked it up a notch by recruiting the help of an architect to ensure the creation of next-level, innovative weaving. The results are quite sumptuous and yet the opposite of ostentatious: good taste is the main artery of this brand and it shall stick to it.

Pringle of Scotland fall winter 2014 runway collection, FW14, AW14, LFW, London fashion week
[all runway images via style.com]

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

LFW FW14 - I

London edition! Get it while it's hot! Ok, I fully realize that I am completely behind and that LFW actually ended yesterday, but there is no way can I could possibly proceed with our fashion month discussions without so much as broaching the the Britain-based collections. New York is known for its sportswear, its more pragmatic approach to clothes, as well as wearability factor, while the designers from London are never afraid to let their avant-garde freak flag fly. The city appears to be the ultimate incubator for young, ultra creative talent and they cannot be overlooked. Now, on with it!

Belstaff

I have a penchant for beautiful outerwear and just had to share the Belstaff collection because their coats were winter perfection, not to mention their biker tough-girl pieces had off-duty immaculateness written all over them. Their chic utilitarian vibe was perfect for any city slicker but would also be ideal for a cold weather weekend getaway. And I'll bet I'm not the only one whose inner voice is telling them to get their hands on (or into, rather) a pair of those giant mittens.

Belstaff fall winter 2014 presentation collection, look book, FW14, AW14, Meghan Collison model, LFW, London fashion week


J.W. Anderson

J.W. actually cites the 1920s as a source of inspiration, but in my eyes, there was a certain nomadic quality to this collection: the dresses being reminiscent of something our ancestors would wear to travel across the land, wraps of large sheaths draping their bodies. It also invoked Japanese flair, thanks to origami-like shapes and structure, and boy were those shapes pretty incredible, if not difficult to picture a woman wanting to wear them. At first glance, there was an apparent nostalgia to these garments, but the more you looked at them, the more they felt like something we'd never seen before, which is a feat within itself when it comes to fashion.

J.W. Anderson fall winter 2014 runway collection, FW14, AW14, LFW, London fashion week


Jonathan Saunders

This Jonathan Saunders collection gave you the impression that his head was a bit in shambles when he was designing it. With a heavy dose of patchwork, the different looks did not appear to follow any fluid links. It was a little bit difficult to narrow down his train of thought, or where he wanted his woman going in his clothes. However haphazard it felt at times, somehow, though, it still came together as a whole.

Jonathan Saunders fall winter 2014 runway collection, FW14, AW14, London fashion week


Joseph

Joseph on the catwalk, yes ma'am. We all know this isn't a revolutionizing fashion label, but as a leader in luxury basics, you can just imagine the case I can make for its relevancy, right? A look book (the route they usually take) would have sufficed plenty in this case, but the walking made for the ideal showcasing of all the tassel-adorned pieces, the movement giving them a dimension only motion could. I.Want.It.All.

Joseph fall winter 2014 runway collection, FW13, AW14, London fashion week, minimalism, tassels


Mary Katrantzou

How do you reinvent yourself and keep evolving when your claim to fame consists of mesmerizing prints on dresses? In the past, it's been with shapes, fabrics, and in spite of the work consistenly being bar none, something's gotta give before the initial coup de foudre turns into ennui. Well, if Kirsten Owen opening and closing the show is of any indication, Katrantzou is on fire with her ideas and it is crystal clear that she knows how she wants to see the brand evolve. For starters, none of her pieces donned any crazy digital print design of any kind and yet there were patterns galore in the form of metallics, collages and textures like brocade, lace, voiles and appliqués. Some of the dresses were reminiscent of peering through a kaleidoscope, or even those ink blot tests you see at the shrink's office. Brava!

Mary Katrantzou fall winter 2014 runway collection, FW14, AW14, London fashion week


Topshop

In the past, the Topshop Unique runway embraced its younger clientele. More so than, say, the young, hip career girl, projecting a more teen-like sartorial sensibility. There seems to have been a little bit of a turnaround for fall 2014: the collection as a whole had no juvenile connotations. Was Sir Phillip Green's team perhaps inspired by the army of fashion-famous power bloggers who are all in their early twenties (and sitting front row at his show)? Speaking directly to them is in fact, after all, precisely how one garment can single-handedly revolutionize a season by going viral thanks to either one's Instagram account. So what is a Topshop collection with no junior notes to it? There were a handful of looks that, taken apart, could fit seamlessly in one's closet, and their cozy style suggestions were top high street contenders. But they also reminded us that they are just that: high street.

Topshop Unique fall winter 2014 runway collection, FW13, AW14, London fashion week

[all runway images via style.com]

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

NYFW FW14 - V

London fashion week is actually coming to a close tomorrow, however, there is just one final New York post to share with you guys. The long weekend here in the US made me fall behind a little bit because I was a busy traveling bee these past few days, with nary a WiFi signal on my train (ugh). But I digress. Back to fashion! They always save some of the big guns for the final days -- the cherry on the sundae! -- and it would simply be a travesty if we didn't marvel at them together. Tomorrow, we'll talk all about what the designers from across the pond have been showing for next fall, but in the meantime let's give NYFW some FOR closure.

See part I
See part II
See part III
See part IV

Calvin Klein

Francisco Costa is pretty much the king of minimalism, clean lines, and almost sterile monochrome dressing (i mean that in the best way possible, truly). He certainly threw us all curve ball this time around: his fall offerings were kind of grungy (skirts with Docs!) and had a near -- dare I say -- granola sensibility. The knits and jackets, however Woodstock-y they felt, were the chunky cozy kind that inspires cocooning at its finest. The long, fluffy cream coat was a particular standout for me.

Calvin Klein Collection fall winter 2014 runway collection, NYFW, fashion week, Francisco Costa


Elizabeth & James

The Elizabeth & James line has been consistent over the years in giving cool girls excellent options. They weren't about to change their game this time around. In fact, they refined it and instead of going the denim-heavy route, their pieces had a dressier appeal. Not dressy as in fancy, but less SoCal and more urban dweller. I'd certainly wear all of it.

Elizabeth & James fall winter 2014 collection presentation, NYFW, fashion week, look book, Mary Kate & Ashley Olsen


Marc Jacobs

To say this show was highly anticipated would be a grave understatement, if only due to the fact that it was Marc's first after leaving Vuitton to focus more on his own label. The whole fashion world was watching with bated breath and he was extremely successful at reeling us into his world. Speaking of breath, Jacobs decided to forego music entirely and have his models walk to a Jessica Lange voice-over, repeating something along the lines of "Goodbye sad world, hello new world, happy days are here again" (it's apparently a song made famous by Barbara Streisand and Judy Garland). From the ceiling were suspended hundreds of clouds, offering the perfect complement to the breathy, woozy soundtrack. It was like the tangible sensationalist version of those dream sequences you often see interpreted on TV. With the haunting repetition coming from the speakers: cloudy days are gone, the picture was complete. Was this the metaphor for Jacobs' silver lining, saying good bye to the sad world of LVMH? It was impossible not to think that was the not-so-subtle message he was propagating. Could I be digging too deep? You be the judge... Moving on to the actual fashion; the palette never veered too far from beiges and subtle pastels, acting as the final piece of the peaceful puzzle. The clothes were literal but not in an obnoxious way: some of the dresses were adorned with floaty layered appliqués , flowing gracefully down the catwalk, while even his shearling and fur bombers mimicked fluffy, cloudy shapes. Marc Jacobs was on cloud nine, stripping all the superfluous and going back to basics.

Marc Jacobs fall winter 2014 runway collection, NYFW, fashion week


Marchesa

The Marchesa collection isn't what I would consider to be ready-to-wear per se, nor would I normally have much interest in their collection because they only do fancy dresses, but with a show this exquisite, I couldn't resist. The dresses were intensely gorgeous but not in an overly precious way. It was eveningwear for the modern -- dare I say cool -- girl with a very posh party (Oscars?) to attend. Beautiful in every way.

Marchesa fall winter 2014, NYFW, fashion week, Georgina Chapman, Karen Craig, eveningwear


Proenza Schouler

If the music was any indication, Jack and Lazaro designed a collection for the urban working girl who's got places to go. A kick-ass remix of Missy Elliott's Work It was blaring and the models donned sharply tailored and incredibly architectural pieces, as perhaps a nod to the city she calls her playground. There was a lot of Pollock-style print mixing (or was that crackling marble?), hardwood floor-looking patterns, structured everything: it was the evolved Proenza girl.

Proenza Schouler fall winter 2014 runway collection, NYWF, fashion week, Jack McCollough, Lazara Hernandez


Ralph Lauren

Can you say classic elegance? Yes, yes you can. Ralph Lauren is such a master at what he does -- he picks a theme and runs with it, to infinity and beyond. For fall 2014, he wants his woman in regal pastels, luxurious cozy materials, never overdone. There was a certain serene quality thanks to the softness of how it all felt as a whole. This collection was like a beautiful, warm, soft breeze and I just want to wrap myself in literally every single look.

Ralph Lauren Collection fall winter 2014 runway collection, NYFW, fashion week


Steven Alan

This designer's unfussy approach to style doesn't make you wonder why he's been dressing the cool (and unpretentious) downtown girls for years. The writing's on the wall: he keeps it as consistent as I do my hair color. This isn't luxury, nor is it a high fashion moment, it'd just stylish clothes that the hip crowd wants to wear, myself included.

Steven Alan fall winter 2014 collection, NYFW, fashion week, look book


T by Alexander Wang

Alex Wang has outerwear on his brain, there's no doubt about it. His main line was rich with different iterations of luxurious coats, and now his diffusion offerings are just as heavy in overgarments. While the former was a complete fashion panoply, the T collection gave us super sporty options in a similar color palette and pops of neon. The message seemed quite similar though: his woman was more than ready to brave to elements.

T by Alexander Wang fall winter 2014 collection presentation, NYFW, fashion week
[all runway images via style.com]

Thursday, February 13, 2014

NYFW FW14 - IV

Today marks the end of New York fashion week and the fash pack is about ready to start heading to London, if they haven't left already. In fact, I hope they have because there's a catastrophic apocalyptic storm (hyperbole?) happening as I type this and essentially all flights are canceled. Best of luck to all of my comrads trying to get outta this town. That's not to say we should stop talking about all of the beautiful fall collections we've been witnessing. Onward!

See part I
See part II
See part III


Hugo Boss

I don't think anyone really paid attention to the Hugo Boss label -- a bit of a sleepy brand, famous mostly for its menswear and evocative of office clothes -- until now. When one of New York's budding design stars gets tapped to helm another house, you can bet that everyone perks up. It goes without saying that Jason Wu was going to want to excavate the brand's core, its DNA, if you will, the result being an extremely precise and rigorous exercise in tailoring and menswear-influenced looks. His famous feminine design sensibility (after all, he's the Mobama gown guy!) was felt too, with low-cut dresses and accentuated waists, but I have a feeling that he is putting it in reserve for future collections. It felt more like Wu was laying the groundwork for what's to come next, which is sure to be grand, if we look at his track record.

Hugo Boss by Jason Wu fall winter 2014 runway collection, NYFW, fashion week


Jenni Kayne

I always pay attention to Jenni Kayne's line because I'm always into her designs. Her girl is cool and never fussy. This season, her double-breasted suits were appealing, fresh and grown-up in a good way.

Jenni Kayne fall winter 2014 presentation collection, NYFW, fashion week


Michael Kors

There was absolutely no doubt in my mind that this collection was going to be epic after I spotted the sign with the model instructions backstage reading: You Are Big Sur Beautiful and New York Glamorous. Big Sur ease? New York fabulous? Who wouldn't love to see how laid-back, romantic Northern California and luxurious, face-paced city life would converge? The apex of that: cashmere jogging pants, incredibly sumptuous oversized knit cardigans, daytime chiffon, various forms of fur... It spoke to me in many ways, including the soundtrack -- Neil Young, Mamas & the Papas, chords from Oscar Isaac's and Marcus Mumford's rendition of Fare Thee Well -- it purveyed a 70s boho vibe in a way that was polished, but oh-so-cool, invoking Marianne Faithfull and Charlotte Rampling in their heyday... Or better yet, if they were icons of the aughts. To sum it up rather unprofessionally: it was ridiculously exquisite

Michael Kors fall winter 2014 runway collection, NYFW, fashion week, boho chic


Narciso Rodriguez

Narciso's minimalistic approach to clothing is always spellbinding to me. His woman is not the fussy type withe her clothing, but she is far from boring. She appreciates cuts, tailoring, beautiful materials. His fall 2014 collection was nothing short of sculptural and precise, which is what we love from the man. Loose silhouettes were modern and interesting, while bouts of geometric color-blocking kept it fun, youthful and on-trend, without ever lacking rigor.

Narciso Rodriguez fall winter 2014 runway collection, NYFW, fashion week


Oscar de la Renta

ODLR, king of Park Avenue, seemed like he was trying to dethrone Herrera or Armani from the Academy Awards red carpet, too. When a lot of young designers are focusing more on sportswear, you can always count on mister de la Renta to bring you right back up to his cloud of fantasy, femininity, glamour and polish. His clothes are certainly not for every day (I don't know about you, but I don't know anyone who is that fancy), but boy are they exquisite. His runway (opened -- and closed -- by none other than Karlie, yet again) began with separates in the form of a beautifully tailored and modern-looking pinstripe suit, chunky knitwear with cool trumpet skirts, even throwing us a curveball with his use of leather. It wasn't long before stunning gowns took over and there was nothing else to do but bask in their glory.

Oscar de la Renta fall winter 2014 runway collection, NYFW, fashion week, glamour, ODLR


Sophie Theallet

Sophie Theallet won the CFDA fashion fund in 2009, which is the reason I am curious to see what she comes up with every season. Hers is not a label that attracts hoards of commotion -- which is all fluff, anyway -- but the work is good, so who cares? Her stance is usually on the sweeter side of feminine, but for fall she injected a dose of sex appeal to her collection. I especially appreciated her use of asymmetry and high slits.

Sophie Theallet fall winter 2014 runway collection, NYFW, fashion week

Reed Krakoff

Reed Krakoff is one of the show I anticipate the most at NYFW. You guessed it: his clean design approach sold me a few years back. While the majority of his cohorts focused on outerwear this season, he centered his attention on separates that comprise an outfit. I was delighting in his use of different textures, making things extra interesting: leather with chunky ribbed knits, satin with perhaps what was a wool-blend jersey, python prints with fur, brocade and voile. It was all so believable.

Reed Krakoff fall winter 2014 runway collection, NYFW, fashion week
[all images via style.com]


Do you have any favorites so far? Tell me!

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

NYFW FW14 - III

The end is near for #NYFW, which means one things only: the thick of the month is approaching and Europe is next. It'll be over before we know it and will seem to have gone by in a flash, but in the meantime, let's try to take in as much as we can and get our eye used to seeing the newness so we can all get an early jump at wearing the future trends. Let's proceeed.

See part I
See part II

Rodarte

In a galaxy [not so far] far away, the Mulleavy sisters did what they do best: transported us all into the depths of their imagination. The design duo is known for bringing unlikely references they dig up from their fertile minds to life, which has been the key to their success, even though some collections have been more critically acclaimed than others. No matter, it never fails to tickle something in the audience, whether they're bringing us an interpretation of Japanese horror movies or Star Wars -- case in point. The signature Rodarte craftsmanship is undeniable and the efforts of integrating more wearable pieces in the collection were successful ones. May the force be with you (sorry, couldn't help myself).

Rodarte fall winter 2014 runway collection, NYFW, Fashion Week, Star Wars, Laura & Kate Mulleavy


The Row

It's pretty obvious who Mary Kate and Ashley Olsen's woman is. They unabashedly design for themselves, which is totally ok given the legions of Olsen-bots out there -- it's far from a confusing concept. The girls who have been following their style journey since their boho-chic days, circa 2003, are watching (and mimicking) their every sartorial mood, but much of The Row's appeal is its unequivocal success in reaching the woman who desires refined, subtle, ultra luxurious materials and clothing cut with a masterful hand (with the bank account to go with it). Cult following still taking memberships.

The Row fall winter 2014 runway collection, NYFW, fashion week, Mary Kate Ashley Olsen


Tommy Hilfiger

The first thing I thought when I saw the set was, like everyone else, that we were going to be transported to a chalet in Aspen. When the first look appeared, it was clear that it was Aspen by way of Seattle and the Four Corners. The outerwear was stupendous and the plaid was youthful and covetable. The last few dresses were questionable, in my humble opinion, but altogether it made for a compelling message. I still wanted to do some cocooning in front a fireplace at the ski lodge, [spiked] hot cocoa in hand.

Tommy Hilfiger fall winter 2014 runway collection, NYFW, fashion week, ski lodge, navajo, plaid


Wes Gordon

So remember how I proclaimed Victoria Beckham's collection as one of my favorites of the week so far? Add to that the amazing offerings from Wes Gordon. His looks were simple and effortless and imbued a refinement that can only be attained by clean lines and interesting proportions. He basically sent down the runway every single thing I want to wear and depicted precisely the woman I wish I could be.

Wes Gordon fall winter 2014 runway collection, NYFW, fashion week, minimalism


Vera Wang

Vera Wang's woman alway appeals to me. The bridal giant always puts out a collection that feels youthful, cool and somewhat boho. For fall, Vera went to the grungy dark side, putting out a very somber but extremely expensive-looking collection, punctuating most of the looks with creepy crawlers in the form of jewelry. The embellishments were divine and the oversized nature of the pieces made it all look like it was the most organic way of dressing.

Vera Wang fall winter 2014 runway collection, NYFW, fashion week, plaid, grunge, darkness


J.Crew

It's always such a delight to go through the J.Crew collection. Preppy DNA aside, they've become known for their cool styling, making unusual pairings work, and have become the go-to for a lot of girls, including the quirky ones with an office job. That's how I see it, anyway. Their pieces always follow the same direction but they have a knack for constantly making them feel fresh and new. Among those were new introductions in line with the emerging trends of the week, like graphic color block, long menswear-inspired overcoats, chunky cosby sweaters and wide-leg trousers.

J.Crew fall winter 2014 collection, NYFW presentation, fashion week
[all runway images via style.com]