Good-Old Manners

January 24, 2011 § Leave a comment

Joan Smalls' entrance at Tom Ford's show

I guess the feelings of every fashionista who didn’t have his or her name inked on Tom Ford’s comeback show’s strict guest list were nearly the same. It goes something like this: both thrilled by Mr. Ford’s ransom of this old-fashioned, departed kind of presentation and eager for some pictorial review. Months went by and we had hints from Vogue, Vogue Paris, V and a few other magazines until we could scrutinize the proper catwalk pictures.

Apart from the super-private mood, Mr. Ford’s show was different from “normal” ones in many aspects. There wasn’t a standard hairdo or make-up. Each model/muse was allowed to let her own individuality free on the catwalk. This collection was what fashion is actually supposed to be: a celebration of each woman’s inner beauty.

By making fashion smaller, Ford made it much bigger. It’s unlikely that the whole industry is taking Mr. Ford’s attitude towards his business as a role model. But anyway, that September night was a delightful pause for fashion’s mad, mad world.

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The Perfect Balance

December 22, 2010 § 1 Comment

Arizona Muse stars Yves Saint Laurent's Spring 2011 campaign snapped by Inez van Lamsweerde & Vinoodh Matadin

I’ve always felt like Pilati’s achievements as the creative director for the YSL house were never fairly acknowledged. It might be true that his trajectory up to now has been irregular. But he has proved his talent well enough through exquisite architectonic-shaped dresses and sharp tailoring. And when he delivers a striking collection, it’s a reliable source for fresh, soulful ideas.

First, because his unrestful search for what feels modern is admirable. Pilati’s not just making clothes. His efforts aim at a much grander purpose: attempting to build a whole new concept, a fashion proposal for the twenty-first century. And as every emerging style needs a muse, I think Pilati’s “new tribe of fashion” is precisely personified by Giovanna Battaglia.

Second, for the designer’s ability for pairing the clean, straight outlines that lead his designs and instantly provides them a contemporary quality with an ancient sense of embellishment that seems to be indispensable to keep the essence of fashion alive.

Where I feel the designer has failed in previous seasons was by trying to pay homage to certain aspects of Saint Laurent’s oeuvre that didn’t fit his vision. With this collection, Pilati reached the perfect balance between Saint Laurent’s legacy and his own standpoint. Such attributes place him among the designers who are likely to define the newborn decade’s aesthetic.

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