Friday, September 26, 2008

Next stop, Paris; part deux

And now for the intellectual portion of our program...


It wouldn't be Milan fashion week without the subtlety of of Italy's own resident Troll dolls, the Caten brothers. In all fairness, this presentation wasn't quite as boneheaded as usual from the twins. The inspiration, or theme depending on your preference, was iconic 70's tv show Charlie's Angels. Besides the opening segment of vet models Esther Canadas (I miss seeing that pouty bitch), Nadege (who I'm not familiar with but is stunning) and Fernanda Tavares posing it up Angels style in brown jersey dresses, the kitsch was kept to a minimum.

For the most part it was 70's infused fare; high waisted flared denim, jersey dresses, and sharp leisure suit-ish tailoring. In a way I think designers like DSquared are essential to the success of other designers. NYC has Heatherette, Paris has Jeremy Scott and Milan has Dan and Dean. Those designers are owed a debt of gratitude for making even Frida Giannini look semi-competent.


To be completely frank, I have some trouble with Fendi this season. It's not because the clothes are ugly, tacky, boring or any other adjective that could suggest sub-par fashion....this is a Karl Lagerfeld designed collection after all. But despite the Kaiser's enviable gift for innovation, craft and the ability to balance three houses on the tip of his finger, his last few spring collections for Fendi leave something to be desired. Since S/S 06, they've played with the same shape, styling and even colors. It's always based around white with pops of primary color or pastels, with crisp, sharp fabrics (some of which have laser cut patterns that suggest lace), bell or circle shaped skirts with a massive belt cinched at the natural waist, clunky shoes and a bag. Even the set has started to look the same every spring. At this point I'm beginning to wonder if Karl's just stuck in a rut or has run out of ways to channel the ingenuity of Fendi's ubiquitous furs into spring fashions.

Maybe we the public just have ridiculously high expectations of him at this point. Or maybe Karl sets himself up to fail by constantly upping the ante. I mean, once you come up with 24k gold fur, can you realistically do something more impressive than that? Either way, one thing is certain; for all of the technical achievement that goes into making these clothes by using the same laser that cuts diamonds for de Beers or splits atoms or whatever, the clothes don't look any different than they did last year, or the year before that, or the year before that. So with that in mind, if you don't know what's gone into making the clothes, does it really matter?

all fashion show images from

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