This fall the LV girl is hip in sleek riding pants by day and posh in layers and ruffles by night.
AS the models sauntered down the catwalk, images from the 1920s – Clara Bow, short bobbed hair, the Charleston and the Great Gatsby – came to mind. Just as the revival of the hourglass shape was celebrated not too long ago, it’s now necessary to have no hips and no curves. Well, only if you want to achieve the look for the coming season by Louis Vuitton.
The Louis Vuitton’s prefall 2007 collection was recently unveiled to members of the media at the chic Maybach Centre in Hong Kong’s Repulse Bay, a posh neighbourhood where privileged locals are known to fork out US$2,500 (RM8,450) for a square foot of tranquil real estate space.
At the entrance of the stark white colonial style building that houses the Maybach Centre, a collection of the monogrammed Louis Vuitton trunks was laid out against an elegant and luxurious Maybach, reminding us of the history of Louis Vuitton’s romance and panache for travelling in style.
Marc Jacobs, LV's artistic director, is still inspiring in his 10th year with this French luxury house. Staying true to the silhouette of the 1920s woman, his designs were reminiscent of elegant women wearing outdoor tweeds by day and seductive silks by night.
Jacobs, celebrated as the “guru of grunge”, embraced the art of blending fabrics and layering for this collection of very un-grungy feminine dresses, military inspired jackets and sleek riding pants in a harmonious play of masculine and feminine influences.
Manly influences were seen in the classic tailoring of the hacking jackets (jackets with slits on the sides or back for horse riding) and riding coats paired with slim pants in herringbone, hunter’s check and corduroy.
Polished flat-heeled knee-high riding boots and wool and cashmere gloves completed the look.
Following through from LV’s Spring-Summer 2007, a gorgeous beige oversized lambskin jacket with a big collar was worn over a top spelling out “What’s LOVE without LV”. This was worn with a short rumpled skirt caught up with large men’s coat buttons or what this French brand calls a trompe-l’oeil skirt. The detailing of strong embroidery on the jacket buttons added to its luxury.
Dresses in silk and satin, were, as Dinesh Kandiah, the public relations director for LV Asia Pacific, pointed out, loose and hung from the model’s body because “that is basically how the dresses were in the Twenties.”
That meant clothes with a high wearable quotient further enhanced with contemporary twists like layered sleeves.
Indeed, a recurrent theme was the layering and play on volume and proportion. For variation in these straight knee-length dresses, volume was added for a touch of modernity. The flapper girl’s dress was transformed with a voluminous skirt by a clever blend of materials.
An ochre coloured broad strapped dress was a versatile and feminine piece which could be worn in two ways: on its own or over a short and full mink skirt that is trimmed with velvet for a voluminous effect.
For the ultimate evening cocktail dress Jacobs combined seven types of fabric using velvet, chiffon, lace, minks to satins with dainty handmade rosettes sitting prettily on the waist.
The generous use of ruffles on the skirt of a black evening dress made it a standout piece. Layers of different types of black fabric were pieced together to create a whirl of layers that plumped up the skirt, perfect for twirling around. The model wore a soft bracelet made from mohair and a pair of platform pumps.
Shoes this prefall are either sporty, flat-heeled leather boots, laced up or fur trimmed high-heeled boots or chunky platforms.
What was notable on the runway was the artful mix of mannish high heels with a soft ruffled black dress. A closer look at these platform pumps revealed borrowed designs of men’s shoes, thereby giving them that chunky, mannish look. These pumps were gorgeously designed using an elaborate patchwork of velvet, glazed calf and lizard or silky satin for evenings. To soften the masculinity of the design, little eyelets were added on the sides of the heel for a sexy peek-a-boo effect.
So, bring out your fabric hair bands, long strings of pearls and loose dresses, and just like the flapper girls, it is only fitting to celebrate the spirit of the Twenties in nothing less than a roaring style.