Monday, April 9, 2012

Bring on the Men - SA Fashion Week

House of Ole, by Ole Ledimo

The collection comprised of men's and women's clothes all in classic men's tailoring - can you say YSL's Le Smoking?

Beautiful and effortlessly simple (with a daring touch in the men's line). The colour palette, with teal and sea greens dominating, also appealed to me. My personal favourites from the collection were the printed pants (1st image), the bottle green jacket with print detail and the formal slippers in colours ranging from maroon to violet (which Ole has been producing/stocking for a few years now). Good job!

Go for:
cheerful printed pants with paint-blot and paisley details
Formal slippers for gents
ladies: cravats and ascots to execute an effortless androgynous look (hot trend for winter)


Impressive: formal denim dungarees, (off)-white-wash ensemble and print patches placed strategically on pants and tops for maximum effect - playing into the print-on-print trend forecasted for spring/summer. Simple staples with lovely tweaks: formal shorts with detail to create a little depth, cut-outs to create a colour-block effect (see the pinstripe shirt below) and flattering-length formal-cut shorts.

Disappointing: the cut on the shorts was a little off: pants are not meant to ride up on the inner-seam as one walks - but that's a minor fit issue (hopefully)
Go for:
tribal printed patched garments (start collecting them now) and denim dungarees.

Naked Ape
Different from his usual aesthetic in the cuts and material but remaining true to what's expected from Sheldon: finished and styled to perfection, free of gimmicks and razzmatazz.
Impressive: the opening created by the cut of double breast coats to "unveil" the full length of pants.
The colour palette: beige, shades of gray (from slate to Cadet gray), camouflage greens and cool reds (crimson and scarlet shades).
The collection is non-trend but echos what men really want: beautiful staples. Sheldon delivered but (and this really is just my humble opinion) failed to peak interest - whether that's good or bad is irrelevant, the clothes are made well, look great and are ready to fly off the rails.

Good collection, but quite boring at the same time.
Go for:
the blazers and trench coats - the overall double breast design is pretty neat,
for lack of better words.

Palse Homme
Collection title: Holy Demons
The collection featured a mix of good (and very interesting) ideas with a few hitches in tailoring, fit and questionable styling.
The clothes, terrific as an idea as they may be, also had costume-like elements, especially the only jacket that caught my attention (red and navy below) which had a bell-boy aesthetic -- which i'm far from being opposed to.
Palse Homme also touched on the upcoming spring/summer collection of florals and prints (ps. the trend will be print on print all matchy-matchy, I'm personally looking forward to it) - the most impressive from the collection being the black and red tartan combo - again finished off with questionable styling in the form of hideous shoesGo for:
the tartan mix combo
suit jackets with beautiful cuts (but pop into the Narain Samy brothers, review below, to get it beautiful fit)
the underwear

Narain Samy
It's always interesting to come across designers who are not usually hyped up and yet produce quality products like none.
Though not much is known about the designing duo, we do know that they are from a family with years of experience in fashion - tailoring being their speciality - and this was evident in the collection.

Featuring not-a-single-misfit outfit, tailored and fitted like a condom (no, seriously). The collection, however lacked direction but the individual pieces more than compensated for the throw-everything-in which, I believe, was the concept of the 12 (odd)-piece collection. The colour palette featured nudes, taupes, greens and whites with accessories in yellow, reds and purple - strange sounding but fabulous!

Menswear, without tricks of female-aesthetics, was made exciting. Go for:
tailored suits, obviously.
the male romper with going-on-safari tailoring

Roman Handt
For a dash of something crazy, a trip on a trip and uber-cool; Roman Handt's collection (with Cloche hats) was a good mix of layering (mesh on fabrics), a bit of fabric manipulation and design detail neither popular in female nor male mainstream collections/lines and that made it pop.
Imagine a wild-wild-west story in cray neons and acid colours; cray and DeGorge!Go for:
Accessories - all of them! Neoprene-looking material bags with origami lines, belts and the voluminous scarfs.
Pants: detailed to perfection with fantastic overlaying of materials.
Hats: if you're a hat person, Cloche makes beautiful costume-y hats - wearable nonetheless. Pity my heads too big for hats (trust me, I've tried the Large ones, nothing fits) - which brings me to my point of: what the hell does one size fits all mean when it comes to hat sizes?

Images by Simon Deiner and Ivan Naude

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