Saturday, February 26, 2011

David Tlale Fall 2011

sub-heading: To whom much is given, much is expected.

After a flood of earned and self-generated media campaign of David showing his fall collection at the bridge, I got nervous - but he's David, he always delivers...

When I arrived at the pre-drinks session to be met by half of Johannesburg outside David's studio, I got nervous - but he's David, he always delivers...

When hordes of people were turned away from entering from the closest entrance to David's Studio, where the pre-social happened, twitter started firing up with annoyance, I got nervous - but he's David, he always delivers...

When I found myself on the bridge frantically looking for a seat - and being told that the demarcated media area was in shambles (due to unforeseen circumstances), but the ever-willing publicists found me a perfect spot - but when I saw the multitudes where still shuffling around to find even a curb to sit their behinds down, 5 minutes prior to the scheduled late show, I got nervous - but he's David, he always delivered...

2 hours post the scheduled time, I switched to twitter to find thee most accomplished of people in the fashion circles annoyed, I got nervous - but he's David, he always delivers.

Did he deliver?

The sombre music opened the floor while ramps marched down the ramp in dark floor-length capes and headed to the middle of the Bridge to a raised platform which played backstage for the duration of the show - clever trick there.

The colour palette David had for his fall collection is typical of winter: blacks, greys and whites while the solid, deep red splashed across all the garments gave the fall collection a femme fatale, luxurious finish which was an incredible thread throughout the collection.

Other than volume in uninspiring locations (cuff, upper arm and hips), the basic silhouette was reminiscent of all David's shows (including his NYFW 2009 ollection) in the past - a trait they also adopted in their Africa Fashion Week's "Butterfly collection" - which left the choice in fabric and intricate detailing to deliver fresh ideas to tried-and-tested fantastic templates.

The cottons, silks and satin (with retro-inspired) patterns DID DELIVER. His referencing of his old collection and retro-inspired prints merged together to capture the old-world, new-charm aesthetic which is where South African street-style sits at the moment.

It was one of the few shows which David did not overstyle which simplifies it for the consumer. It was less intimidating which then found more people relating to some of the pieces in the collection (which could translate to breaking the ice between potential-consumers and the brand)

An overall good collection, bar by the many fillers which, in my opinion, are fantastic collection spin-offs but should not have been in the collection itself but with an ambitious 92-piece collection to pull-off, thoughts of this were not entertained, which is a real pity. eg, though all very different, the 10-odd wet-look voluminous dresses and white shirts (each with it's own uniqueness in terms of design) seeing all 10 (though, again in my opinion) were not the core collection.

With all this said, I just really need to ask (and I am guilty of blushing and gushing in excitement when the presentation of the collection requires "out of the box"-thinking): was the SHOW bigger than the COLLECTION? or the perfect marriage? I would really like to see a more subdued show and more drama in the collection...

TO answer: David delivered, but forgot to edit, he misaligned his collection with the drama that his media-mentions generated but the collection was thorough, complete, beautiful and solid - which, when all is said and done, is what its all about, THE CLOTHES!

Pics by Simon Deiner

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