The Spring 2012 Collection from Dries van Noten was nothing short of amazing. The largely black and white collection was beautifully punctuated with pops of color and botanical prints, as well as a night-scape print based on photographs by James Reeve. The silhouettes were structured and intricate, reminiscent of couture pieces created by Balenciaga in the 1950s including boleros, pleats, peplums and ruffles. Dries also offered a wide range of textures, mostly in black, creating dimension throughout the collection.
Stephano Pilati’s Spring collection for Yves Saint Laurent was a lesson in reinventing the suit. He created separates of all types, from slim trousers, to pencil skirts with a flip at the hem, paired with structured jackets and soft, silky tops. Volume was also a major player, opening the show with a trapeze coat, and shown throughout with exaggerated shoulders that we have seen on many runways this season. The jewel tones were beautiful, and combined with the Moroccan-inspired accessories created the feeling of being on holiday in an Oasis. And of course, there were some standout dresses to round things out, gorgeous flowing numbers perfect for those warm spring nights.
This was the first collection by new creative director April Crichton, and it was classic Sonia Rykiel (which makes sense seeing as Crichton has spent her entire career with the designer). Sonia’s daughter, Nathalie Rykiel, was a guest of honor at the School of Fashion this past May. Seventies-inspired knits and sundresses came down the canary yellow runway, in shades of white, yellow, and sienna. There were drop-waisted pleated skirts paired with leotards and loose day suits – a modern take on 1920s style. Closing the show was a series of dresses in floral prints and sunset colors, completing the beautiful debut collection for the new designer.
Vanessa Bruno was clearly inspired by the Mod styles of the 1960s for her spring collection. Barely there minis came down the runway one after another, paired with knee-high peep-toe boots, offering a modern spin on the beloved footwear of the era. She also showed slim pantsuits topped with jackets and knits, in a palette of white, grey, olive, and clay. Sweet liberty prints and jackets embellished with paillettes gave a young, playful feeling to the collection.
Opening Ceremony founders Humberto Leon and Carol Lim (who were guests of the School of Fashion in 2010) were appointed as the creative directors at Kenzo in order to bring new life to the brand – and that they did. For their debut, the pair created a collection full of [primary] color, mixed in prints and layered over one another to dazzling effect. Silhouettes in the Spring 2012 collection were varied, ranging from ladylike skirt-and-blouse ensembles to slim pants and jackets, and on the more voluminous side – a gorgeous trapeze dress and boiler suit, worn by none other than a brunette Chloë Sevigny as she closed the show.