Karen Walker on the Beauty of Escapism

by Olivia Moreau

Karen Walker's SS18 collection is full of deft touches and casual cool. If her previous work has been driven more by the singular narrative of her inspirations (like Marie Antoinette), then this collection is a diversification of aesthetics that is bound to translate well commercially while throwing down the marker for future collections. Karen's strongest point has always been her ability to find whimsy in functionality, and this collection is no different in that sense but the escapism truly lies on the details and the silhouettes.  Beautiful collection all together nicely topped off with wonderful prints. 

Veronica Beard and the Mexican Summer

by Lotus Ladegaard

Behind Veronica Beard are sisters-in-law Veronica Miele Beard and Veronica Swanson Beard. The Beards launched their eponymous brand back in 2010 with their signature Dickey Jacket. Today, the brand offers cool and sassy American sportswear that is designed to be mixed and matched which has earned the ready-to-wear fashion brand a loyal following. Veronica Beard’s Spring 2018 collection was created drawing on inspiration from Acapulco in the 70’ies. The colour palette is subtle and offers a little bit of everything, although, mostly different prints, stripes, pleats, and florals. The collection is pretty and definitely has a bit of sass, but it is also rather expected and feels very safe and a tad dull. It fails to really wow, nevertheless, if you have an eye for style you can assemble several pieces with an existing wardrobe to make a standout look. Pieces like the Dickey jackets of different styles and textiles are part of Veronica Beard's DNA and can easily be mixed and styled to suit you. Other pieces like some of the crop tops would look great styled with bottoms with less obvious references to the 70's. Veronica Beard presented a Spring 2018 collection that undoubtedly will be a hit with their fans.

Co and the Re- Evolution of the 40s

by Linda Bezos

Los Angeles transplant Stephanie Danan and Justin Kern do not adhere to the modern notions of california fashion that is seeped in casual streetwear. Instead, they find their inspiration in the heady glamorous days of the 30s-40s. Co's SS18 collection filled with the joy of movement and elegance perfectly harmonized with the ballet themes of the photographs. What stands out from this wonderfully elegant collection is the way Co approaches sophistication. Instead of throwing everything but the kitchen sink, Co's approach is a more subtle and slow acting dose of beauty. And if you are looking for a sense of femenine mystique with an added layer of class and sophistication, this is the collection for you. 

It's 5 o'clock Somewhere with Haney

by Olivia Moreau 

Mary Alice Haney has always been good at figuring out what she does well and stick to that. This SS18 collection is no different in that sense. Haney produces a set of clothes perfect for the evening and utterly imperfect for anything before that (unless you are on vacation in Mykonos and haven't been back to the hotel since last night). Such clarity of purpose and being able to stick to a singular narrative that fits a specific time frame in a woman's life is what makes this collection not only worth of praise but also worthy of investment. Beautiful prints, shimmering blouses, and dresses to die for are the staple of this collection and we are happy to buy into Haney specially after 5pm. 

The Re-Birth of Mara Hoffman

by Cara Livingstone

Mara Hoffman is a risk taker. She dismantled her company a year ago to reinvent it from the group up, from the thread to the supply chain to marketing. This SS18 collection stems from that reinvention and the ensuing clarity of Mara's philosophy. The clothes are made through sustainable materials, the designs are equally appealing from red to sky blue, from deconstructed jackets to tailored silhouettes, all the right moves are part of this new narrative Mara has introduced and we love it. 

Khaite and the Call of the Classic

by Olivia Moreau

Cate Holstein's Khaite is the fashion statement that ends in a revered silence and a dash of clarity. It does not sway with the whims of slogan t-shirts and off the shoulder trends that come and go. Her SS18 collection is deeply rooted in that idea of the classics outliving the short attention span of the trend filled fashion circus. Khaite sticks to its basic form as in classic, understated, fully functional and uber-elegant. To reach this sort of seamless beauty not only requires understanding the foundational aesthetics of western fashion but also requires an exceptional talent at executing a narrative to dizzying perfection.

To gush over this collection is an appropriate reaction.

Johanna Ortiz and the United Colors of South America

by Olivia Moreau

Johanna Ortiz has a flair that corresponds more with South American colors and aesthetic than Parisian sensibilities.  So when she reimagined Polynesian beauties of French impressionist Paul Gaugin that flair for the dramatic did not escape her collection but enhanced it. Cropped Tops and evening wear the staple of her collection but what really stood out are not just the silhouettes but the sooting tonality of the clothes, how they moved, how they seamlessly stood out during the fashion week that has produced some excellent collections. 

The Undying Legacy of Versace

by Linda Bezos

Vogue, Warhol, My Friend Elton, Icons, Baroque, Animalia, Native Americans, Tresor de la Mer, Metal Mesh, and Butterflies are all Gianni Versace's principal contribution to the iconic brand. His genius was overshadowed by his brutal murder and in the 20th anniversary of his death, his sister Donatella merged her sense of ecstatic aesthetic with Gianni's iconic collections. And the end result is not only an homage but also marching call to move forward with history firmly intact, legacy fully realized and no end in sight. Ultimately this was a show of what Versace has done to fashion and what it is capable of doing. The clothes speak for themselves and are etched into our memories. This was sort of like a wedding and a funeral. Both in the minds of the iconic designer would have been a joyous celebration. 

Tome and Deconstruction of Color

by Cara Livingstone

Ryan Lobo and Ramon Martin never bough into the celebrity driven notion of aesthetics. For SS18, the designers chose to stage an intimate dance performance choreographed by one of their longtime muses, Pam Tanowitz who routinely deconstructs the classical ballet to provide a constructivist notion of dance. Almost an a homage to deconstruction of staple ideas, Ryan and Martin disassembled the colors of the rainbow and constructed into something that is equally appealing. 

LFW SS18 : Ryan Lo's Dark Fantasy

By Cara Livingstone

Ryan Lo has always been good at wrapping up his work in technicolor maximalism. So this collection would be a departure from that aesthetics. But the overwhelming sense of intricacy is complemented through the means of black and white and some muted pink colors. This gives the collection verve and clarity. There is no question about Ryan's ability to construct form but this collection further enhances his reputation as a master at his craft as he does to black and white what he has done to red and yellow. It is a collection that would need a bit of time to settle into the minds of the consumer and editors but when it does the genius would come through in spades. 

LFW SS18 : EDDA and the Levity of Longing

by Omi 

Fashion Scout has a strong history of providing platforms for up and coming designers that want a foothold in London. So new and exciting is nothing new if you are at a fashion scout show. But now and then new and exciting is backed up by substantive and visionary and that is what EDDA is. New, exciting, substantive and a visionary all right now, all in the making. 

EDDA is the brainchild of Norwegian designer Edda Gimnes who by any measure is a prototype of a well to do, design award-winning fashion creative. But that is where any cookie-cutter comparison ends, as unlike a lot of well-to-do-fashion-creatives her work stands out not only as a substantive exploration into the dissection of color but also a general philosophy of levity that is often missing from relatively new designers understanding of functional aesthetics. 

EDDA's presentation during London Fashion Week came with the added blessing of Lanvin's former creative director Alber Elbaz who mentored Edda after presenting her with the German Designer for Tomorrow award last year. So EDDA as a brand had a guiding hand most new designers would love to have as they start off on their journey of world exploration and in Edda's case outright world domination.  

EDDA's SS18 presentation had many elements to swoon over. And there seems to be a natural progression toward what really works for her look from hand-drawn sketches to patterns soaked in color. When she presented her SS17 during Oslo Runway last year her potential was undeniable but there were some polish, some collective narrative missing from the mix. No such assessment can be made about this collection as it takes all the right ideas and aesthetics into one singular narrative and produces a mature, polished yet youthful and casually edgy look. Edda's clothes seem to know that fashion which takes itself too seriously is bound to lose out and that sort of clarity is expected from a Tom Ford but for such a young designer that sort of clarity is both astounding and refreshing. 

EDDA's collection as a whole has some deeply satisfying hues that worked quite well with the patterns and her time with Manuel Vadillo puts her in great company. Patterns complemented by 50s silhouettes is exceptionally well done and worthy of both creative praise and commercial investment. The pantsuit with its delicately soaked colors of the lightest blue is probably the most conventional piece of work in her collection and even that has a deconstructive element attached to it. Taking every variable into account, EDDA's collection is on par with all the heavy hitters we have seen in the last two weeks from New York to London, from Tom Ford to Gareth Pugh.

Visually intoxicating, intellectually present and commercially viable are rarely in the same room together yet during this presentation of EDDA, they were front row. It is a formative collection from a designer who knows her boundaries and pushes them; who knows the levity of fashion and embraces it and provides a narrative like it is an uplifting Norwegian novel. And like an uplifting Norwegian novel, EDDA's presentation is rare, much appreciated and a shot of genius.  

 

 

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MFW SS18 : Fendi and the Songs of Decadence

Fendi's SS18 collection bore all the watermarks of a brand who is comfortable being utterly exclusive and decadent. If Gucci was an exploration of aesthetic richness then Fendi is the exploration of commercial richness. Lines, sheer, see through all contributed to the clarity of Fendi's vision which provided another solid dissection of the brands visual tapestry and excellence.  

MFW SS18 : Moschino and the Escapism of Levity

by Olivia Moreau

Moschino took a stand last season. Trump-era politics, waste, and outright apathy were the targets of that visually enticing show. This SS18 was Moschino's remedy to those blues, a form of escapism, visually stunning, soaked in the petals of flowers and propped up with the rebellion of biker ballerinas. It was a show for the conscious consumer with the understanding we all need some escapism in the form of levity and positiviy. 

PFW SS18 : Maticevski's Australian Dynasty

by Lisa Lerner 

Toni Maticevski hails from Australia and Australian women love him. Whether or not others outside the continent feels the same way is still up for debate. But his SS18 collection provided ample evidence of his strong following in Australia and why that is the case. From classic silhouettes to avant-garde deconstruction Toni's work evolved from what used to be at time overcomplication into a set of grand visuals. 

NYFW SS18 : The IT Girls of Zoë Jordan

by Samantha Mittten 

Zoë Jordan is the best-kept secret of the IT girls of Hollywood. The list of celebs who sport ZJ's clothing is long and distinguished. But that is not a product of just pushing marketable products through placement but an indication of ZJ's trend appeal. ZJ has the allure of exclusive yet the silhouette of inclusive. This wonderful equipoise translates into clothing that appeals visually and remains functional. This SS18 collection is no different, the color arrangements are wonderfully well thought out, the stripes are delicious and California surfer girl meets east coast banker vibe is impossible to ignore. 

NYFW SS18 : For the Love of Tom Ford

by Cara Livingstone 

Tom Ford has been the savior of many a brand. His stint at Gucci revived a floundering icon, his artistry lit up YSL when it seemed most unlikely. So when he went on to start his own brand no one batted an eye. Well, no one should have as the bloody-minded artistry Tom produces is nothing short of extraordinary. And that bloody-mindedness, that sense of the right aesthetics at the right millisecond were on display at the Park Avenue Armory. He co-opted elements from his much-loved men's collection and installed the same spine into this SS18 collection for women. If you ignore the commerce savvy, celebrity adored aspect of Tom Ford as a brand you are left with just pure artistry from the sheer dresses and elegant and tight silhouettes. It is no surprise that everyone loves Tom Ford, because who does not like Art that sells in while holding on to it's soul.  

LFW SS18 : Isa Arfen's Japanese Expedition

by Cara Livingstone

Isa Arfen's Serafina Sama found inspiration for this collection from her first visit to Japan. And it is full of intricate references to the Japanese aesthetics. This very zen collection is a product of a designer completely comfortable with her ability to produce post-cultural trends. The clothes have elements of what Japan is known for...Kabuki theatre, Samurais, Pagoda and inner calm. Trimmed silk suits with magnolia patterns were the standout in this presentation and it is likely to bring in a lot of new admirers into Isa's pagoda. 

LFW SS18 : Dilara Findikoglu and The End of Days

by Cara Livingstone

Turkish born designer Dilara Findikoglu has always been interested in the vision of apocalypse and her previous collections weaved seediness of the underbelly of culture with the aesthetics of an ever-evolving avant-garde movement. This collection does not veer off into unchartered territory but doubles down on the apocalyptic visions of Dilara. Whereas most designers try to sooth the wound of time with visually interesting colors, Dilara goes outright for the jugular. Not only does she not shy away from using color as a form of rebellion against a world burning, but also she uses her considerable talent to create a narrative deeply entrenched in goth meets nihilism. Dilara's work is what underground London is and with each passing cycle, she embraces and pushes that aesthetics in new heady heights of wonderful paranoia, soaked in color and stiched in expert silhouettes.