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Monday, 9 January 2012

Pre-Fall 2012: Celine, Givenchy and Preen.


Before I started writing Hello, Tailor I used to review catwalk shows on my personal blog, dividing any designs I liked into "Clothes I'd wear" and "Clothes other people could wear", because I recognise that a lot of the time an outfit can be interesting and well-made without being to my personal taste. If I only posted pictures of clothes I personally would wear, this would be a pretty boring blog. But sometimes, even taking into account the fact that everyone has different taste, there's no criticism to make except THIS IS BAD CLOTHING.

all pics from
What is this? And where did the photoshoot take place? A 90s hotel room with shag carpeting and "modern" fixtures that consist of huge, pointless, 2001: A Space Odyssey slabs of metal attached to the walls for no apparent reason? In front of which the models lined up like so many pissed-off looking Charlie Chaplin impersonators in their ill-fitting trousers, slouching forwards as the cameraman turned the flash up to 11 for maximum ugly shadow projected onto the backdrop behind them? What a dismal scenario. You can see it in her eyes, can't you?

The thing is, I don't have any problem with couture designs that bear little relation to the body lurking underneath. What's fashion about, if not livening up the everyday human form? But there's a difference between Issey Miyake supergluing a 4-foot paper sculpture to a model's hip, and... this. This is an uncomfortable pair of pyjamas made from suit material. It looks like a sewing experiment from someone who's making trousers and a shirt for the first time, without a pattern. What design process led to this? It doesn't look good! And if it doesn't look good on a professional model, and I can pretty much guarantee it won't look good on anyone else.

Now, this one is slightly more acceptable but not much. For one: inexplicable nude shoes that make it look like the model's feet are bare and that her toes have smoothly fused together like the Penguin in Batman Returns. I kind of see where they're going with the shirt -- peplums are really in right now, and so a backwards peplum is... something? So at least I can assume that more thought went into this outfit. But still no. No.

To be fair, some of the Celine collection was OK. This outfit is very chic in that slightly inhuman, boxy way that always seems to come partnered with random leather squares, like minimalist furniture. 
White duck feet?


I can't tell if this photoshoot is intentionally "casual" (bleh) or if it's just incredibly low-budget. Possibly both. I think they just got the models to stand in a street and wait until no one was standing behind them. There's an equestrian theme going on here, which is kind of same-old-same-old, but remove the helmet and what you've got left is some great-looking tailoring and sweet lapel action.
Just got off my horse. You know. Just casually standing here.
Also weird knee-boot gaiter things. Not sure what's going on there, except it continues in the ever-popular trend of giving models needlessly chilly knees.
This lady rides to work. Really. You know this, because she's wearing a helmet.
If you ignore everything above the neck and below the knees, this is a great outfit. I don't really understand why they decided to go with the riding helmet thing, but c'est la vie. It's a lovely coat.

I'll be interested to see how many people shell out for taupe shin-gauntlets come "Pre-Fall" 2012. Luckily they're an easy accessory to DYI -- just get some car inner-tubes and shove your legs in there. Maybe superglue a buckle over the top, for pizazz. SORTED. <-- shin-gauntlets are the biz. What outfit is complete without them? (Trick answer: all outfits.)
Permanent bruise on her nose from the helmet hitting the sunglasses.

Here's an outfit for stylish gallery curators and sophisticated trophy wife characters to wear on TV, although probably not with tights.
LOVE this dress. First up, I'm easy for high-collared, skin-tight dresses with long sleeves. The print on this one seems to be a photo of some kind of cable-knit (?) pattern, and it's colourful enough to look awesome. This is a whole outfit in itself, just slap a jacket over it and you're done. Total fashion-magazine fare.
One part Mary Katrantzou, one part teacup pattern, one part... spanx belt? This dress is kind of weird-looking in my opinion, and way less versatile than the all-blue one above, but it's certainly striking and manages to use the orange-highlight thing that's so ubiquitous right now without seeming too obnoxious about it. And it works with black tights.
This model is confused as to why all the OTHER models aren't wearing tights.


  1. I love that first Givenchy outfit picture, so graphic it's almost like anime to my uneducated eye. But all the shin-gauntlets things (shouldn't it be, um, high spatz maybe?) reminded me of are the "calf pants" Ryan-Gosling-Jacob mentions owning in Crazy, Stupid, Love which I watched yesterday. I don't think it's very good when your couture fall concept item thingy shares 98% of its DNA with a terrible late night infomercial purchase.

  2. I could definitely see the first Preen outfit on a TV show and if Sex and the City was still on Charlotte would definitely be the one.

  3. That first Preen outfit immediately reminded me of this:

    from the amazing STTNG fashion tumblr:

  4. I LOVE THAT TUMBLR. did you send it to me before? or did i send it to you??

  5. exactly. it's such a tv outfit. supposedly "businesslike" yet skintight and brightly coloured. perfect for SATD or Revenge, or Gossip Girl.

  6. maybe it's the helmet and the overlarge sunglasses that give the impression of an anime character?

    apparently the shin gauntlets are actually half-chaps, which i probably should have known.

    i've never seen crazy stupid love, and with a title like that i'm unlikely to do so, but Zoolander is practically a documentary when it comes to some breeds of high fashion so i can only agree.

  7. nice opinion.. thanks for sharing...