Love in Lisbon with Galia Lahav

By Andrea Arjento

Galia Lahav’s head designer Sharon Sever took on Lisbon at it’s most clear and most enigmatic and unfurled a set of gowns worthy for a torrid love affair that is their inspiration. While it may seem counter-intuitive to have bridal gowns as an homage to torrid love affairs on paper, the reality is all love affairs worth writing about has a certain element of torrid-ness to it. And Sharon is able to weave that element of variability into a fairytale that looks wonderfully complex and elegant. This specific collection has all the signature Galia Lahav details but in many ways, it is also the most realistic exploration of the fairytales we tell ourselves. And for that, we are in love with Galia Lahav's Lisbon collection.

The Polity of Petar Petrov

by Lotus Ladegaard

Ukrainian-born designer Petar Petrov started his career in Men’s Wear, however, he quickly began designing for Austrian socialites and sophisticated women, and the many formal events the Austrian capital has to offer. In 2009, he founded his eponymous label focussing on creating timeless pieces with a feminine silhouette and impeccable tailoring. He studied fashion at the University of Applied Arts in Vienna under Raf Simons and has also enjoyed tutoring from the design duo Viktor Horsting and Rolf Snoeren, who is behind the brand Viktor & Rolf. He has built his brand on word to mouth, shooting most of his collection at his very own Viennese apartment. He has accomplished quite the popularity by using just influencers and having the right clientele. Whether or not that strategy is sustainable is anyone's guess but so far he has made the right decisions at the right time. 

For Resort 2019, Petar Petrov presented a rather androgynous collection filled with tailored dresses and suiting. The colour palette was fairly simple and featured classic black and white along with a few colours both subtle and bold and a variety of prints. The silhouettes were tailored and androgynous with a feminine flair. The collection as a whole is interesting and features some stand-out pieces that is bound to excite women looking for versatile pieces. 

His eye for tailoring truly shines when it comes to suiting, and while some of the silhouettes are somewhat androgynous, he still manages to highlight and accent the female curves. The dresses are flowy, and one can almost imagine their movement, although many are starting to expect a real show where the dresses truly come to life from the Bulgarian raised designer. 

The polka-dotted maxi dress in black and white is exquisite, easy-to-wear and easy to imagine a socialite wearing at their preferred resort. The bold orange snake-printed dress was another standout and will work well for many occasions. 

The many high-waisted trousers with incorporated belts were also exquisite and felt contemporary and classy. The black suit with oversized shirt also stood out among the suiting pieces as well as the pink suit with a lighter tone shirt with long sass from the neckline. 

Overall, Petar Petrov delivered a promising Resort 2019 collection that will take his followers by storm and might win over new ones.

Vera Wang's Un-Traditionalism

by Anita Monroe

Purists be damned…Vera Wang is pushing the envelope in directions in bridal wear we haven’t seen in a century. Despite taking her inspiration from the Sun King, the avant-garde aesthetics she has been pushing is relentless, modern and above all entirely her own. Unlike the rest of the bridal market, Vera Wang’s work has no derivatives but her own. And this collection is an extension of her previous collection and you can see the grand mosaic of her work slowly building up to a crescendo. It is light, it is forward thinking and above all it is Vera Wang.

The Soft Whispers of Marchesa

by Olivia Moreau

Marchesa has always been ethereal, and full of feminine glory. This collection is no different and we are thankful for that. The delicate dance between ruffles and sheer, the love affair between tone and lines are all present in Marchesa’s Spring collection. The torrent of negative attention that almost sunk the brand seems like a distant memory or may be it is just an escape from the realities that still await Marchesa. It is still a polished and quietly confident collection that knows its limits and its appeal.

Elie Saab's Evolving Symmetry

by Lydia Schaff

Elie Saab’s bridal wear has always been filled with lace, embellishments, elaborate silhouettes, waist-defining belts along with fairytale narratives. But this specific collection moves intricately within that realm to provide something more streamlined and minimalist (compared to the previous collections). Tighter symmetry complemented by craftsmanship of the highest quality is what this collection is about. The collection brims with a new found sense of optimism and modernity. Elie Saab is always evolving as all great designers do.

Tailoring 101 with Victoria Beckham

by Lotus Ladegaard

Victoria Beckham has successfully transitioned from a novelty pop star in the world of fashion into a respected designer, who’s designs has a widespread appeal and is ever evolving. Using herself as an inspiration, she has moved from very fitted pieces to sporting a more relaxed style with loose bodices and oversized pieces. She launched her brand in ten years ago and it has since become a fixture at the prestigious New York Fashion Week. Victoria Beckham favours the wearable and relatable rather than showpieces, which her collections reflect.

For her Resort 2019, Victoria Beckham has returned to the very tailored and feminine pieces. The colour palette ranged from classic black, white and red to coloured prints and knits along with camouflage and beige tones. The oversized and loose pieces have been replaced with feminine, fitted and fierce dresses, suits and outerwear that reflect the designer’s own evolving in taste. It is easy to see Victoria Beckham and her story in this collection that embraces colour, prints and a little bit of rock’n’roll. 

The little pink dress mimicking a two-piece with white and pink shirt and a pink fitted skirt stood out with tons of editorial appeal along with being edgy and fierce. Several of the black looks all stood out such as the little fitted black tuxedo dress and the long A-line dress with brown and it would be easy to imagine the designer in any of these walking the red carpet. The printed pieces felt contemporary, youthful and fun and will undoubtedly win over a younger crowd.

Victoria Beckham presented another interesting and commercially viable Resort Collection and certainly made for a very tasty appetizer ahead of her show in September in London.

Diane von Furstenberg's Pioneer Women

by Olivia Moreau

Diane von Furstenberg's spring collection is a homage to a different kind of pioneer women than the wild west. It is more of a concept as opposed to an historical repeat. The women trailblazer are the pioneer women in DVF's eyes. And this homage is partly based on what they would wear now and partly based on the 'homely' and humble aspect of life as a woman. It is a product of DVF's inherent and uncanny ability to mix cultural shifts into traditionalism. From the softened color palette to outright mixture of prints, this collection stands out. 

The Unveiling of Jonathan Cohen

by Sylvia Stoss

It is almost a surprise to find out that Jonathan Cohen has never shown during NYFW. In his first outing on the famed but subdued platform, Jonathan did what he does best...mesmerize his clientele with outright levity. From lean dresses with botanical prints to structured mini in a rainbow all came with the customary JC look. The raw edges, the oversized sleeves are always there but JC's work has evolved into truly encapsulating the many colorful facets of being a modern woman in these times. As almost a countermeasure to negative colors JC poured all the colors of the spectrum into his collection and our eyes and our sense of style are thankful for it. 

Miami Vice with Fausto Puglisi

by Sylvia Stoss

Fausto Puglisi has many inspirations but his work remains his own. Despite his obsession with Versace, he has carved out a niche of his own in this unforgiving market. Feminine, cheeky and above all, uncompromising in its aesthetics Puglisi’s collection bores the quality of a designer completely comfortable in his skin. Oozing with sex and a sense of Miami whimsy embroidered with palm trees and color blocks, Puglisi's collection is just another piece of a masterpiece Fausto is building.

Caught Red Handed with Red Valentino SS19

by Bianca Hill

Valentino’s Pierpaolo Piccioli found his inspiration in the undying spirit of the Mexican women revolutionaries in his latest collection for a brand that has always championed that cause with utter ease and great aesthetics. The contrast of women revolutionaries with the soft edge of femininity playing intricately with the roughness of their existence is fully realized in this collection. It is wild and subtle at the same time, with movements draped into each piece. There's a restlessness to it and there's a lot of red to it as well. It is a proper Valentino joint. 

Playing Duro Olowu's Zora Neale Hurston on Repeat

by Lotus Ladegaard

Nigerian-born and London-based designer Duro Olowu has consistently pushed the envelope with his innovative combination of patterns and textiles, drawing on inspiration from his international background. His pieces often feature inspiration from all over the world along with his Nigerian roots. Duro Olowu knows textiles and how to create intriguing silhouettes and designs with an impact.

Over the years, he has gained a cult following which was partially a product generated by his high-waisted patchwork skirt that was hailed as the dress of the year by both British and American Vogue. And in 2005, he was named the New Designer of the Year at London Fashion Week, even without having a catwalk show that season.

For Spring 19, Duro Olowu presented a colorful and bold collection with plenty of his African influences and his signature prints, floral and polka dots that is bound to excite fashion editors around the globe as well as win over new fans and followers.

The blue floral dress in layered chiffon was exquisite and felt easy, yet glamorous. The green 1930’ies inspired dress was another example of dresses that felt easy yet had plenty of classic and elegant flair. Pieces with mixed prints are always a hit with Duro Olowu’s followers and many of them are beautiful and intriguing. They will certainly have an impact on any occasion.

More subtle pieces like silver blouses, a black dress with mixed textiles and suiting was also featured in the collection. The collection also followed suit on the very trendy stripes, which Duro Olowu has managed to mix with other prints and other stripes in a very interesting way. The red, black and white striped suit with a long coat and Asian collar was beautifully tailored and could easily be worn separately with other pieces.

Duro Olowu keeps on delivering and we keep on loving it. 


The Rising of Wunderkind

by Lydia Schaff

Wolfgang Joop's Wunderkind has become a german heavy hitter within the industry. With the introduction of the "Berlin spirit" it has slowly but surely moved toward a more cohesive minimalist structure that appeals to the german market. Wunderkind has become sort of a platform as opposed to just a design label for Joop's vision of Berlin as he collaborates with talents all across the creative field. Whether or not this Hugo Boss meets Celine' aesthetics is a sure fire way to consumer's hearts is yet to be tested, but if the current collection is any indication of things to come, then we are seeing a foundation being built for a very successful reboot. 

Jill Sander and the Second Coming of Ultra-Cool

by Linda Bezos 

Jill Sander's design team of Luke and Lucie Meier reconceptualizes the Jill Sander ethos through the aesthetic of polish and symmetry. The resort collection is full of personal fashion with grand ideas. Each individual piece fits nicely into the grand vision of the designers who instill radical and edgy elements to even the most mundane objects. Jill Sander's resort collection is full of grace, glory and outright rebellion but with an understated desire to fit in. It is a collection worth swooning over.    

Alena Akhmadullina's American Excursions

By Linda Bezos

Alena Akhmadullina is slowly breaking into the American market. Her work has always been about extravagance that works as a buffer for exclusivity within the context of the Russian and Eastern European ruling classes. But that same appeal would be viewed as impractical within the context of American ruling classes as less is more when it comes to less flashy cultural elites. And as she navigates into the American market she is slowly but surely understanding the role of minimalism even when the work in itself holds true to a celebration extravagance. Her Fall 2018 collection is built for the American market in mind. It is more minimalistic comparatively speaking and has the traditionalist element of Alena's homeland constructed into it. The usage of less fur and more light fabric makes this collection the most accessible for the American and European market and are likely to further Alena reach. 

Valentino's Retro Futurism

by Linda Bezos

Pierpaolo Piccioli loves the street. Street styles from New York to Rome are his muses. Valentino's foray into its Resort collection is a canvas of eclecticism. It is filled with broody bourgeoise charm of 70's Rome. Art Deco to Baroque styles all invade the visual exploration of Piccioli's work. It is a collection brimming with cool and 'devil may care' sort of clarity. And by incorporating classic Valentino logos almost as a gonzo method, he foretells a future where classic brands like Valentino evolves to move forward, evolves to survive and prosper. Piccioli is a master at predicting where the market is heading and this surely is one of his more astute and nuanced collection within that realm of retro-futurism.  

Jill Stuart's Chelsea Girl

by Olivia Moreau

Jill Stuart delved into the narrative of an empowering woman during NYFW. Her previous work which by any measure has been a celebration of women of all different kinds and shapes was the foundation of this wonderful presentation. Forging the traditionalist format of a catwalk, Jill Stuart decided to evoke "the Chelsea Girl" movement as her inspiration. In terms of the aesthetics, the clothes were old school romanticism mixed with new school functionality. From the metallic brocade coat and microfloral silk dress engrossed in a copy of Pulp Fiction to the Langley Fox illustrations, the whole presentation had a feel of richness and deep understanding of what makes clothes beautiful. Visually stunning, intellectually stimulating and thought down to every detail Jill Stuart outdone herself in this wonderfully rich and evocative collection. 

Underrated Charm of Smarteez

by Linda Bezos

Smarteez is soaked in smart design. A culmination of superfine cotton, silk, nylon, poplin create the main foundational fabrics for Smarteez, which is one of the most exciting yet underrated fashion houses in Italy right now. Marta Forgheiri, the main designer for Smarteez has the credentials (CSM trained) and the talent to consistently produce clothes that stand out. The name itself stems from the ridiculously well dressed Smarteez crew in Post-Apartheid South Africa and does it justice by creating aesthetically pleasing constructs that not only appeal to the visual markers of beauty and elegance but also appeals to the feeling of clothing which is so very important. Smarteez's autumn collection is full of that equipoise between fine fabrics and standout fashion. It is more global than Italian in its aesthetic expression and more Italian than global in its finishing. 


Aquilano Rimondi and the Joy of Symmetry

by Olivia Moreau

For Resort 2018, Tommaso Aquilano and Roberto Rimondi take inspiration from Joan Mirò's paintings  The incorporations of  graphic connections and primary colors often in contrast, characterize the vertical bands that outline the silhouette, emphasizing the duality in movement and static.

The puffy sleeves and ribbon revers, with asymmetrical cuts exude sensuality in hammered slipped crêpe, while sticking the DNA of minimalism. Experimentation with colors and stripes pays off as every single piece has a story to tell. 



Holly Fulton's Love Letters to Europe

by Linda Bezos

Holly Fulton took a hiatus for almost a year and this is her second collection of her second coming. And by the looks of it, it is a second coming worth celebrating. Overture of Brexit dictated the foundational aesthetics of Art Deco graphics, the shape of the Empire State Building, large Swarovski crystals and Mongolian repurposed fur. The 'long-distance love affair' with Europe proper is peaking through her magnificent take on this calamity of isolationism that has gripped at least half of the British isles. Ultimately her collection is far more romantic than the nitty-gritty details of her inspiration Brexit which by any measure is an ongoing headache. But for sake of jest, a collection like this helps to deal with the magnificently daft decision that is Brexit. 

The Rebellious Couture of Viktor & Rolf

by Lotus Ladegaard

The designer duo Viktor Horsting and Rolf Snoeren have always sought to challenge fashion preconceptions and link fashion and art. In their early beginnings, the world of fashion did not exactly welcome the Dutch duo, however, the world of art responded well and paved way for them. Known for their avant-garde and theatrical silhouettes and references, Viktor & Rolf always puts on a show on the catwalk. Although the bold and extravagant style is not to everyone’s taste, their pieces always manages to make a statement and leave and impression.

For Couture AW 2018, Viktor & Rolf has created an intriguing collection with highlights from the past 25 years all reworked, refreshed and reimagined in all white and Swarovski crystals. The collection was every bit avant-garde, dramatic and theatrical as anyone would expect from the Dutch design duo. It made for quite a spectacular show with so many stand-out pieces that editors will have a hard time choosing one. 

Pieces like the ballgown with corset bodice and tulle skirt with wholes in it and the suit wrapped in Swarovski crystal band stood out as bold and exciting while other pieces like the bed with pillows as collar and duvet off-the-shoulder dress and the NO coat finished with crystals stood out as humoristic and felt fun. A wrap-around dress with crystal splatters and completely open neckline and the ballgown wrapped at one shoulder with the words I love you on it, were feminine and romantic in that Viktor & Rolf way. A few pieces might have been somewhat over the top, however, is that not to be expected from avant-garde haute couture? Viktor & Rolf knows how to breath take an audience and deliver a good show.

The Couture AW 2018 collection is a fantastic and bold even for the avant-garde. It might not be to everyone’s taste, but Viktor & Rolf will always seek to challenge our perspectives and conceptions, whether we like or not.