Friday, 26 September 2014

Tatyana Parfionova - ТАТЬЯНА ПАРФЁНОВА

When I first came to Russia last week, I was hit by the perception of Russian fashion by the Russian people. For them it does not exist or it is only either trash or either way too expensive for what is it, which is another problem young designers have, as they do not know what segment they should put their collection in. Thanks to my friend, working at Norsoyan and R.E.D designers, I had this awesome insight of the business of fashion in Russia, its problems and its advantages. Along my trip, here in Russia, we went for few days in Saint-Petersburg to walk on the Nevsky, wander around the Hermitage, Catherine Palace and also, visit some concept and designers stores. He wanted to show me this designer, Tatyana Parfionova, St. Petersburg's most famous fashion designer. Tatyana moved to Leningrad from Ukraine when she was 8 and then founded in 1995, her own fashion house. I did not know what to expect from the outside but once we got inside the shop, like opening a new book, I was seduced by her universe.

Firstly, she is an artist above her designer's label, she has a home section along her clothing line. Her store in Saint-Petersburg is an all-in store, except menswear which is only available on order. The office, fitting room, rest room, home and collections display are all in the same room. After a quick look through her collection, I was impressed by the quality of the pieces and the originality of their designs, structured or unstructured with suits similar to some Thom Browne pieces with a print inside, making the suit unique. You can easily feel this cold and luxurious aspect of the Russian History with a touch of craziness as a real artist. Mixing colours, prints and cuts, it is like opening a book, you are attracted by a nice cover but then you can discover a charming story, that how I felt when I was browsing her womenswear collection for this winter. Each pieces (from the couture collection) are handmade by an efficient team, therefore each pieces are truly unique.

Style 1 // Style 2 // Style 3

Wednesday, 24 September 2014

西山 景子 - Keiko Nishiyama

Keiko is a fashion designer born in Tokyo in 1984 and studied BA Fashion and Performance in Tokyo, she is also based in Tokyo and London as she also did a MA Fashion Design at LCF after working as an assistant designer. She is my new favourite in the new wave of young designers. I came across her work few months ago and assisted to her défilé this September 12th in London, she was nominated and took part in the Ones to Watch show organised by Fashion Scout and the British Fashion Council. Her website, Keiko Nishiyama is very well detailed and you can read all about her new collections, her inspirations and her own adaptations.

Her first real collection is the AW13, inspired by British garden; She makes the drawings herself and asks to a Japanese digital printing company to deal with the printing part of the process, as she takes pride in the high skill of the Japanese people. Her designs include delicate prints originally drafted from hand drawn pieces and edited to create the imbalance in the garments which create visual illusions and is achieved through careful colouring. Her underlying concept and ideas of printing, the new and the old, flow from the idea of a “hybrid and cabinet of curiosity” where materials are mixed to create an atmosphere of mystery. As she did for her "first" collection a mix of old and new flowers to create this mystery around that old garden, where different eras intertwines.

This SS15 is her very first collection after being graduated, and - clearly inspired by the aquatic fauna, was a statement to art. She wanted to make this collection a living museum worn by her pieces, a moving aquarium was marching in front of us. Again the incredible quality of prints where remarkable - this is her own Japanese touch that we may find again soon in her next collections, but if the quality remains the same, without no doubt that it would be another success.

Style 1 // Style 2 // Style 3

Monday, 1 September 2014

Eudon Choi

If I have to tell you one of my flaw is that I often write when something lit the spark, I make few adjustments and then I publish it. I hate spending too much time or several sessions on one article otherwise I lose the mood that I was trying to insert in these words. So whenever I do not write during a period, it is because I did not have that little thing that makes me write article in one go. Today I came across something very interesting, that lit the spark and that caught my attention, the work of Eudon Choi, a Korean designer based in London. After a small start in 2010 thanks to the Vauxhall Fashion Scout Merit Award at the LFW and by invitation by Anna Winter at the Milan Fashion Week, he is now well on his way to achieve something admirable.

Whatever you will think when you will see his collections, he is Korean and his work is well soaked by that. The clean cuts, the formal patterns, this idea of a lustful minimalism and this touch of crazy opulence make the Korean fashion so appreciated. Tidy outfits on the catwalk, reflecting this well-organised mind of his and the inspiration from menswear, Eudon Choi did not have to wait too long before being respected as a true challenger in the fashion world. I would be delighted to see him working on a collection for men, would it be the same inspiration or will we see more of this vintage aspect on a man's silhouette? Here are my three favourites outfits from his past collections. I have been seduced by this use of old styled garments such as the uniform and the dress we can see in his collection, brought back to life in this new century with a modern Korean touch.

Style 1 // Style 2 // Style 3

Tuesday, 5 August 2014

Winter is coming

Red Gauntlets by Dolce & Gabbana
Take a deep breath, and there you are, back in the XIIIth century. A cold winter is coming, one of these, where you have to wear enough layers in order to survive, to lead on the war you started centuries ago. Winter is coming and this garrison dressed by Domenico Dolce & Stefano Gabbana, is not here to boast. Bearing their believes on them, they walk straight forward to show their persistence and determination. Inspired by this settings, where the Church was the most famous Department Store, the orders were only their confederates, Dolce & Gabbana made this holy spirit alive once again. Saints and Knights on a delicious architecture are, here, designed like stained glass, beaming their desires of conquest. Few oversize sweaters along the well fitted pieces, describe perfectly this Italian sense of perfection in the man's silhouette. This dark display comes across what we saw in their previous (recent) collections, only the snow were missing to dive the assembly into the deepest era of mankind, Middle Age. Dark colours are well chosen, the luxurious green is only here to remind to the people the ostentation life of powerful men at that time, tainted by this crimson red, as a shadow of sins covering their lost souls. The theme along the show can be seen as ironic, a light refreshment from the court, brought by trouvères and troubadours, as a parade to show off the power of this garrison.
Dolce & Gabbana mastered this collection through details, to soften the collection, they designed some fabulous accessories, especially gloves and slippers. This second party of the show take the audience back down to its chair, cosy and safe, to imitate the lords, hidden in their castles, next to the fire to keep them alive.

Style 1 // Style 2 // Style 3

Wednesday, 30 July 2014

阿部千登勢 - Chitose Abe

Today I wanted to present you a designer that I really like, Chitose Abe, born in 1965, she started at Comme des Garçons with Junya Watanbe and worked along Rei Kawakubo until 1998 when she decided to set up her own label, Tokyo based - Sacai. She does what she wants, that is what I like the most, like Thom Browne or CDG, those few designers are doing what they like, following their instincts and own tastes rather than a trend.

Chitose says that she designs with her mood and follows it along the process of making her collections. Through her clothes she wants us to feel happy, rich in emotions, selling a piece of garment is one thing, selling emotions is another. Since 16 years in business now, with her own label Sacai, she is under the spotlight with a very sharp mind, doing what she wants, offering her a fresh freedom on the catwalk rather than showing another commun collection which will go with the perfect trend analysis done by StyleSight or WGSN. I share with you three styles of her last collections that I really like the most and whatever she says about her Japanese inspiration, I do believe we can feel that Japanese touch through her collection. This lightness in the design and fabric, even if it is a winter look with a heavy coat, there is this calming feeling of perfection, making you feel at ease and warm.

Style 1 // Style 2 // Style 3