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Pcn_p_vision_chantilly_lace_dominique_ma Pcn_p_vision_silicon_painted_lace_domini (from left to right: Chantilly lace with oxidized bead embroidery from Alphalace; lace painted with silicon by Sophie Hallette)

The classic "it was a dark & stormy night" start to many a pulp fiction novel could just as easily apply to the fall 2007 fashion palette, recently on display at Première Vision Pluriel. Black seeped its way into everything, from gray – a newly important shade, even for spring 2007 – to metallics, to tone-on-tone mixed shades of black. Fabrics were similarly heavy and complex: hefty cashmere jerseys, durable wool/nylon blends, leather-like nylon knits, and silk tulle backed with black foil. Companies like Mantero showed black-on-black silk jacquard crafted from chenille yarns and a "slightly chintzed" base. At Linton Tweeds, navy and brown were mixed to shiny, but dark, effect, while Clerici Tessuto’s black damask was decidedly Balenciaga’esque. Variations on guipure lace – traditionally more of a warm weather choice – are now firmly ensconced in the fall lineup.

"The wools are dense and crisp, a look I feel is very modern right now," Tia Cibani, creative director of Ports 1961 recently told WWD. "Technical finishes on natural fabrics are very strong, and I like all the lacquers on silk." Others were more circumspect. "I was a bit worried at first," says designer Tracy Reese. "But as time went on, I accepted the edginess. It will be hard to incorporate this feel into my line — I’m not exactly known for it. Let’s just say it will be an exciting challenge."

Others, such as Lazaro Hernandez, one half of the Proenza Schouler design team with Jack McCollough, are equally hesitant about this new direction. "There is definitely a disconnect because all the stores are asking for the opposite," explains Hernandez. "We love creating things with volume, so it’s what looks right to us now, but it’s not exactly practical." But many are equally excited about this newly sophisticated – and less heavily decorated & ornamented – fabric palette which is more demanding technically. "There is definitely no room for faux pas with these colors or these fabrics," said Hervé Pierre, creative director of Carolina Herrera. "Everything is very clean." Which means that bad design, cuts & draping have nowhere to hide. "Moving forward, I think the feel will be less crafty and more about finishes," says insider-fave designer Alexander Wang. "The fabric itself, the way it’s constructed, will be the focus. Essentially, the fabric will make the garment what it is." (via WWD)

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- Lesley Scott

(photos for WWD by Dominique Maitre)


September 28, 2006 in Design, Fashion, Trend Alert, Weblogs | Permalink


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