CHANEL- An homage to B&Q
Another season, another fashion week, another bizarre attempt at high-end attire. First offence was a smirking Cara Delevingne clomping down the Chanel S/S 2014 runway to a pounding soundtrack of Jay-Z in a dress that can only be described as a cross between a twister mat and the colour swatches from B&Q but in reality took inspiration from an “antique German paint chart” (okay, Karl, but I’m pretty sure I did see you shopping for DIY recently). And yet, Alexandra Shulman claimed the collection was “modern, new, intoxicating” and Karl strutted down the catwalk to rapturous applause. I may be missing the point here, but the only thing I found “intoxicating” about it was the chemical graffiti paint motifs and paint sketches. Despite this, not all was amiss as there was a smattering of tasteful tweed dresses in berry hues and pearl-encrusted miniskirts which we will assuredly be seeing on every it-girl’s waxen legs in the coming weeks. A swing and miss in some parts but albeit still a colourful and powerful fiesta bursting with art and creativity.
Elie Saab- Addicts will have their Withdrawal Symptoms Relieved
Come award season, every A-list starlet will be swishing down the red carpet in one of Elie’s excruciatingly beautiful designs from his new collection. The collection featured sweeping, chiffon gowns, encrusted mini-dresses and gorgeous lace detailing reworked in jewel colours: emerald, salmon pink and monochrome. He gave his typical overly princessy designs an injection of sex appeal with plunging necklines, transparent lace panels and thigh splits. A welcome change from block colours were Saab’s infusion of poppy and floral motifs growing up from the hem – which gave an edgier, younger feel to the collection. Black dresses smothered in green, black and pink sequins evoked an upbeat disco feel, reminiscent of the Studio 54 days. Elie Saab aficionados will be truly replenished this season as this man knows how to make the cameras flash.
Dolce and Gabanna- Show Us the Money
Despite Stefano’s and Domenico’s much documented tax woes, they showed no signs of money troubles, as their S/S 14 offering was a lavish gold affair celebrating Italian heritage and history. Ancient gold coins were seen as blown up wrestler-style belts, in hoop earrings and positioned carefully into relaxed up-dos and jingling mini dresses. Postcard images of Greek temples and columns were printed onto dresses as beautiful floral garlands were interwoven into silk and chiffon dresses giving a couture feel to the collection; proof of their stunning workmanship. Black lace, polka dots and lingerie-style dresses featured prominently as the designers paid homage to screen sirens and bombshell muses such as Sophia Loren and Brigitte Bardot. The contradiction of elements and textures offset the compilation as coloured furs were combined with lacquered silk dresses and pencil skirts; a fresh twist to the classic ‘lady’ look. Green-eye inducing accessories included Grecian column heels and delicate floral and gold coin headpieces giving a playful and youthful finish to the look. The highlight of the show was of course the Finale, which included a harem of bronzed goddess-like models gliding gown in all gold ensembles complete with door knocker earrings and rosary beads. Overall an eclectic classic image reworked the Italian way.
Louis Vuitton- Making its Final Marc
Like a musical icon hanging up their microphone, Marc Jacobs ensured his final show was a concert that included all of his greatest hits: the carousel, the escalator, the elevator, the fountain; all re-imagined in a sombre, glossy black. Bestowed on each model was a glorious “showgirl” inspired headpiece with peacock and feather plumes created by milliner Stephen Jones inspired by Marc’s musical muses (Cher, Barbara, Judy) who showed the world the “showgirl in them”. Marc effortlessly coupled Victorian-style lace tank dresses over relaxed tomboy jeans with sequinned varsity tops and leather jackets to create a flamboyant and glamorous look with a relaxed sport aspect that was still wearable and sophisticated. The emphasis of the show was it being a retrospective collection which included a model strutting down as if on the streets of Rio carnival in a graffitied Stephen Sprouse cat suit (a reference to Vuitton’s infamous collaboration with the artist). A bittersweet collection that was transcendently beautiful and yet gave us one last peek into Marc’s mad, weird and glamorous world. There was a celebratory element to this final collection that left the viewer curious as to what Vuitton’s next follow-up act would be.
Zainab Sardar is an upper-sixth student at Altrincham Grammar School for Girls. She is interested in the global fashion industry.