Dries van Noten SS12
Last year, Dries Van Noten came across a young English photographer named James Reeve while he was president of the jury at the fashion festival in Hyères. A year later, his Spring/Summer 2012 has been decorated with the photographer’s night-scape prints after they collaborated with each other in Antwerp. Because the photos weren’t meant for attire purposes, Dries combined the prints with haute couture silhouettes from the 1950s. In turn, every pixel came alive.

While prints have found their way into almost all Spring/Summer 2012 shows, the result of this collaboration was incomparable. In one look, Dries even decorated one skirt with actual stones to mirror the lights in Reeve’s photo of a building in Marseille. It is so wonderful to see aesthetic passion lit up in van Noten’s academic flair. Ready-to-wear, with all the delicacies of couture.

(Also: Look at Americas Next Top Model cast off, Fatima Siad, working the runway above! The 24-year-old is the first castoff to land veritable high-fashion runway work!) View Post

Manish Arora SS12
I will say it for the rest of my life: no matter what direction he goes in, Manish Arora is a motherfreaking genius.

What do we all love Arora for? The theatrics. The fun. The playful transcendency. All of which are readily available for Spring/Summer 2012. Those, and a wholly intended introduction to slightly less wild, though just as incredible, ready to wear garments. All sharp, futuristic, and significantly witty. If someone can own a dégradé effect of black and white butterfly-wing sequins trailing into a feather-packed midi dress, they deserve abundant praise.

As for his design debut at Paco Rabanne in just a few days? He says “…that’s going to be a show“. Eep! View Post

Roberto Cavalli SS12
I’m pretty sure Roberto Cavalli has earned himself the rights to the phrase, “Going For The Gold“. His Spring/Summer 2012 collection was practically blinding. Producing a brain twinkle similar to the sensation you get after staring into the sun for too long, this renaissance collection was the perfect way to end Milan Fashion Week.

The feel was light and sensual, though touted laborious detail. Gold sequins dances around, and even outlined, expert pleating. Garments opened in such a way that floral prints would reveal themselves only upon movement. There was even leopard-printed mousseline. Le sigh. Gold standard, in every way. View Post

Aquilano Rimondi SS12
Roberto Rimondi and Tomasso Aquilano, better known as Aquilano.Rimondi, have seduced me. Every one of their poetic, Renaissance-inspired pieces were tended to with feminine artisanal detail – a choice that will take every customer to a luxurious place that balances the sculpted with the sensual. Hand-sewn pearls, molded tops, fluidly tiered pleats, marble sculpture-like draping, and more.

Though they have had an incredibly busy week – also showing as the designers behind Fay, the Tods-owned outerwear label, and creating a 20th-anniversary collection for Piazza Sempione – their collection was full of entrancing vigour. A refreshing injection of contemporary elegance. View Post