Saturday, January 15, 2011

Lanvin pre-fall2011

Alber Elbaz , a very talented designer from the school of self deprecation, is a tiny bit disingenuous if you take the time to stop and listen. One minute he poo-poohs the "internets" and claims to abhor anything smacking of high technology including email and in the next he creates a pre-fall collection of day clothes inspired by the likes of ADR and her cocktail dress addled diet for daytime. Where else would one come across such sartorial madness than by virtue of the "internets"? I like his clothes and find them beautifully cut, gorgeously colored and cleverly styled. What I don't quite get as time passes is their own signature. Last season there was a strong whiff of Michael Kors in the air and there is still a trace of that aesthetic in this collection. I'd say these clothes are more generous in their scale and fluidity like a luscious mocha gown that almost invades one's senses. His blouses in a couple of exits have the most ingenious scarf that becomes a sleeve. This one bit of magic makes this offering special and important. If only more designers found ways to invent and dig deep the landscape would be so much more exciting.

The combining of chunky ribbed tights to the picture stuffed into evening sandals looks like Prada from last fall and does not do much for the models besides adding unwanted bulk. This detail does little to ground the romantic quality of these dresses to a daytime vocabulary as much as it acts as a dead weight. Silly tricks are boring and beneath a designer of his stature. His mix of the sporty with the glamorous is very effective in the grey chunky knitted sweater over the liquid ivory long skirt. Jewel covered tweed jacket over a lurex shot blouse and floor length skirt just echoes "Chanel-ish". The platinum charmeuse dress, all bias cut, draped and drawn to within a centimeter of its life is a celebration all on its own.
The shoot for these clothes in a claustrophobic space adds an interesting tension but all the taxidermied creatures as props are creepy, especially the stuffed dove on the floor on a glittering leash.

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