STELLA MCCARTNEY PFW FALL/WINTER 2014
For F/W 2014, it felt like Stella McCartney was officially back. Everything from the surprising rubber-soled flatforms to the hand-stitched golden embroidery showed the Brit designer at her best. Perhaps expectedly, a lot of the collection used loungewear as a muse, like the peach slouchy knit all-in-one and the oversized 80s motif sweaters. But elegance was never far away, especially in the jewel tone colour palette. Utilising a wealth of different techniques, McCartney tried her hand at tie-dye colour-blocking, and delicate fringing to round off her sporty-come-chic collection. Our favourites? The mini, drapey silk cord cocktail dresses that closed the show. Somehow, flatforms just got sexy.
By: Sarah Kwong
Sarah is a features writer for a women’s weekly magazine and is based in London. Prior to this, she worked for Cosmopolitan UK magazine, and has freelanced for a variety of National magazines and websites, including The Times Magazine, Glamour and Cosmopolitan.co.uk, among others. She also blogs on the Huffington Post.
SAINT LAURENT PFW FALL/WINTER 2014
Saint Laurent’s F/W collection was nothing if but a French-chic homage to Creative Director Heidi Slimane’s ‘Rock Diary’ days. How do you blend LA’s raw, seductive rock and roll scene, which Slimane has long styled and photographed and even moved his helm for the iconic French brand to, with Saint Laurent’s long history capturing the essence of the Parisian woman’s secrets to style and je ne sais quoi? Velvet, sequins and studs embellishing chic shift and babydoll dresses. Capes and double-breasted houndstooth coats mixed in with motorcycle jackets and oversized furs. Paired with black tights and knee-high boots envisioned in black patent leather (with a few bedazzled pairs for good lust-worthy factor), models channeled 60’s it girl mod, with kohl-rimmed cat eyes peeking out from under blunt bangs.
In a palette of black and metallics, with some disco-ball red thrown in for the daring, the collection was young and playful while maintaining the sleekness you expect from the fashion house. A pop-art smoking gun print, red and gold leopard, quirky oversized polka dots, and dresses flaunting bedazzled modernist abstractions mixed and matched with classic tweed and sleek black leather pieces. The final touch? Slimane re-imagined Yves’ tuxedo suit in sequins and rockabilly proportions that brought the collection full circle. From the strong modern art elements and irreverent mix of glamour girl and wild child, it harked to the label’s sixties Studio 54 days and Yves’ aesthetic, while staying utterly relevant and Slimane. No doubt you’ll be seeing this collection from the streets to the stage.
-Sarah Bertness is a Brooklyn-based freelance writer covering the arts, music, fashion and culture. She has a love for all things avant-garde, late night rock and roll, wanderlust, and a good dose of fringe and gold sequins. You can follow her musings on Twitter @sarahbertness
GIAMBATTISTA VALLI PFW FALL/WINTER 2014
Unlike so many collections this season, Giambattista Valli went for a strikingly feminine collection, ignoring the trend of infusing menswear into every single piece and instead showing women that they can be strong and powerful in their own silhouettes.
Supremely romantic and exuding charm, this season brought about a slew of cocktail dresses in a romantic palette of pale pinks, rose petal reds, delicate creams and lacy blacks booming with texture thanks to wool embroideries, fluttering velvets, jacquards and godets. Many of the silhouettes were allotted sculpted bodices and cap-sleeves along with cinching at the waist creating the ultimate hourglass figure while simultaneously providing a level of desirable sophistication and elegance. The leg was given it’s time to shine as voluminous outerwear, perfectly draped capes and lady-like swing coats kept their hemline far above the knee with no coverage in sight and his girls stayed primarily covered up from the waist up. And while even though there may not have been many masculine bones in this seasons’ body of work, this ‘pretty in pink’ adaptation provided us with a sense of simplistic femininity that the fashion world will be sure to embrace.
By: Jillian Magenheim
Jillian Magenheim is a writer, editor and a digital media/PR consultant for multiple fashion and beauty brands. You can follow her thoughts on twitter @Magenhaz
ELIE SAAB PFW FALL/WINTER 2014
“Dark Opulence” was the title given to Elie Saab’s autumn-winter 2014/2015 collection – a collection that demonstrated the designer’s deft ability to adapt his trademark feminine and glamorous style into more modern and edgy looks thanks to a newfound “geometry of cut, shape and decoration.”
This hybrid of soft and hard, elegant and casual, feminine-yet-structured, was perhaps most evident in the show’s opening look: a zipper-embellished top paired with narrow trousers and suede heels, all in the exact same shade of merlot (after all, monochromatic looks are a Saab signature). A coordinating floor-length cape with a mink fur collar capped off this first glimpse into the fall mood conjured by Mr. Saab.
Inspired by the abstract expressionist works of Mark Rothko, the collection’s ombré motif – so often used to flattering effect on dresses of various lengths and in shades of burgundy, emerald and pale rose – recalled the horizontal hue variations seen on Rothko’s most famous color field paintings. A moody print of jewel-toned florals set against a black background provided a chic respite from the show’s strict tri-color palette.
Variations in shape also gave the pieces added wearability, with 1950s hourglass silhouettes sharing the runway with boxier shapes reminiscent of 60s shift dresses. On-trend fall touches were evident throughout the show – most notably via Saab’s use of velvet and lace, and the dramatic transparency and pin-tucked pleating seen on so many other fall runways this season.
But an Elie Saab fashion show just wouldn’t be an Elie Saab fashion show without a final series of extravagantly embroidered (this season, in tonal sequins), overtly opulent evening gowns – an expected but nonetheless gorgeous ending to a solid showing from the maestro of glamour.
By: Lucas Somoza
A fashion stylist, event designer, and style writer, Lucas Somoza has a keen eye for all things beautiful. Based in Paris, Lucas regularly collaborates with Olivia throughout Paris Fashion Week, producing editorials and contributing reviews of designer collections. You can follow Lucas on Instagram and Facebook.