With Joan Smalls as the opener for the bold and embellished Emilio Pucci Spring 2014 collection, Peter Dundas proved that sports can be glam. At least when your sports gear contains crystals, perforated leather and flashy fabrics. There was a little bit of a boxing tinge to the collection, with large championship-esque belts decorating body con dresses and drapey skirts, while a neoprene crop top was scuba ready, once the leather fanny pack is taken out of the equation. Of course, this athletic theme wasn’t literal; the slouchy leather sweatpants would not fare well on a treadmill and the dresses that looked like the net of a basketball hoop were actually embroidered with small beads. All paired with long wavy tresses and dramatic side parts, other melodramatic looks included a long gown with beaded sides and detailing, an amazing silver top and pants combo that is embroidered to the glamorous point of exhaustion, and a sequined mini dress in all the colors in the rainbow.
The best way to pay a tribute to bygone eras of fashion is to invite the icons of the past, who have lasting power to this day, to present a collection that combines features of both old and new. With the likes of Pat Cleveland, Gisele Zelauy, and Alek Wek strutting their stuff in cheeky designs from the archives (plus a hat and earrings dripping in teddy bears) there were also mods of this era battling it out in sets of twos. Emblemized either ‘Good Girl’ or ‘Bad Girl,’ each look had a counterpart with a twist. A microscopically-scaled pair of denim shorts layered over fishnets was topped with a cotton moto jacket, while her neighbor was covered up in a pair of skinnies, and a more conservative white topper. The game continued as a lady who lunched was paired with a risqué friend baring her frilly underpinnings. A sleek white jumpsuit with some shoulder volume had a catwalk friend in a silk and tulle gown, shrouded with a mysterious face mask. Accessories with a sense of humor were de rigeur; a croissant hung off a pearl necklace, an airplane topped a hat, headbands turned mods into devils and Cleveland even took a stroll with a bag of groceries. After all these years, Moschino continues to prove that fashion can be fun. Where else would a shopping bag become a runway-worthy outfit?
While fashion shows contain perpetual glamour, Roberto Cavalli upped the offerings by presenting a show that erred more on the side of a film with a large budget than a stroll down the runway. Cavalli finished off his décor with giant cameras and spotlights focusing in on close-ups of the embellished frocks with low-cut backs that were heavy on the sex appeal. Complementing each look? Sandals that wrapped around the feet and ankles with petite ropes, like updated gladiator shoes. Movement was evident in each piece, whether it was a sheer silk caftan, a suede tassel that hung off of belt loops and purses, or a chain-mail dress that swung with each step. In Cavalli’s world, opulence is key, and we’re all for it, especially if it means rocking a fur stole even when spring inches closer to summer.
For Jil Sander to present a collection that is not awash in minimalism and all it stands for, would be a shock, to say the least. So for the designer to draw inspiration from the artist Alighiero Boetti’s colorful works, critics and buyers alike were delighted at her mastery of all jumble of colors in one place. While only four of the pieces in the collection featured this print, the rest of clothes featured Sander’s signature clean cuts and muted colors. A jumpsuit was cut dangerously low in the front, but tamed the scintillating factor thanks to thick straps and mid-calf pants, Crop tops were rather risqué, seeing as what little fabric they had was interrupted by a sizable slit. Dresses were just one movement away from a wardrobe malfunction, with the same thick straps as the jumpsuit that revealed even more of a bare chest, one of which came in a satisfying grey marbled fabric. While the collection may have seemed overtly sexy, this master of fabric is skilled at the art of illusion. The Twittersphere was abuzz with Sander’s shoes, so expect to see the playful platforms and flatform sandals all over come spring.