We were early fans of Mary Katrantzou who generated so much excitement when she debuted. Her designs were noteworthy if not groundbreaking at the time and when a new designer emerges that strongly off the block with an identity that is fully-realised, they can run the risk of becoming cliché. For several seasons we feared this was the route Katrantzou was taking, but recently she appears to be making a concerted effort to move out of the comfort zone that saw her repeating her mirror-image digital prints in various permutations. She has course-corrected, bringing a freshness and new direction to her collections which were previously heavily reliant on her old tropes.

For Spring 2018, Katrantzou opened with voluminous dresses and skirts and then moved on to woven column dresses with fringed hems. In a collection that referenced air and lightness (bags were inflatables) and was inspired by childhood, these silky parachute skirts and dresses were not short on volume. There were still some digital prints, but they were countered by the use of stripes which, together with her choice of technical fabrics and the use of bungee cord fixtures at the neck and waist, added athletic touches. In addition to the paint-by-numbers prints, Katrantzou's standout pieces included neoprene dresses that were embellished with tiny, plastic Hama beads. The beads provided texture and interest and proved to be a more clever way of creating the check pattern that is being evoked everywhere this season. The show closed with pretty dresses in oversized broderie anglaise.


Images | Luca Tombolini / Indigital.tv

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