I love following patterns in Girl with a Banjo, specially when it comes to talking about la señora McCartney.
It’s really not a secret that I deeply admire her professional career and that she is one of my role models. In fact, I remember that the first fashion review I ever wrote was about one of her collections (read here). So in order to keep this tradition up, I am detuning her Spring Summer 2013 Collection for you using the official Press Release.
We’ll work on how THEY TELL IT, and then we’ll detune it to how WE’LL TELL IT from now on. Enjoy!
Something which we can all see in the latest Stella McCartney‘s collections is her interest for bold et vivantes colours. Remember that SS12 was mostly about blue, white and (even) green combined in so many different ways. And then blue, black and fuchsia were the highlights of her FW12 collection.
Studying SS13 Collection you will have to guess how the woman’s body look like under her clothes in what the designer calls the “understated sexiness of the collection”.
Try to focus from now on on the architectural structure of each and every garment.
It’s true that you definitely must touch a garment to have the real feeling of it. But from these pictures is super easy to see that Stella is going for super light and thin fabrics. She’s making woman’s silhouette become vertically rectangular (look at the 3/4 straight dresses) and she’s maintaining a balance (even when she dares with asymmetries as in the orange look). It’s important to notice that, even if she seems to be obsessed with geometry and a straight body-line, these dresses fit perfectly around the woman’s waist improving feminine shapes.
This is a good picture to appreciate the shoes. These ones for instance have a Lucite platform wedge. The ones in the first picture seem totally like an open version of VANS shoes.
Can you slowly start defining a pattern with those oval shapes which keep appearing?
Ok. Let’s move on.
Here’s a closer look to the textiles where you can see in detail how they are made. Micro-plisse is that tiny ruffle feeling over the fabric which makes it look slightly pleated and surely gives it a relief sensation.
Notice how all the different layers create a woman-in-motion feeling. You can clearly guess from all the different shadows over models’ bodies that these clothes are made for dynamic women who (literally) DRESS TO LIVE. And this is very Stella’s.
Ready to continue?
Spearmint. Of course! On my notes I had written frog green and leaf green. But it pretty much gives you an idea of what tonality we’re talking about. Yes, I think this is a continuity from her SS12 Collection where green was important but wasn’t the MAIN thing -this was blue-.
Regarding white, you should have a closer look to the bottom of the central model’s pants. There’s an elliptical shape there too and it’s almost imperceptible. But it actually has two different hues of white.
Keep those greens in mind and let’s carry on!
I mistook this green with military green, but instead it’s called forest green. Yes, by this time you should be aware that Stella is going natural this season and that she is building a super linear women. In these looks for instance she balances the linear feeling with a belt so she can create a slight curve around her waist.
For those of you who -maybe- haven’t had the chance to read about Stella’s philosophy in Fashion, you have to know that she is totally against the use of fur and leather, she transfers her ethics and moral values to every single step of the production and she is a vegetarian herself (besides a lot more things that I will tell you soon in another post).
We are aware that sharp necklines will be totally IN next Spring Summer. But what about strapless necklines? We really haven’t spoken about them. However, these three looks play a decisive role in the above mentioned sexiness of the collection.
Focus on the first look, for instance. It’s the sort of dress I would gladly wear to work in the middle of the summer. It’s totally feminine and sumptuous but at the same time it gives strength to woman’s silhouette. It’s a dress which definitely makes you feel that sexy-business woman who wants to have an affair-in-the-photocopier-room. Woop!
Look two remains true to Stella’s new hues of greens mixing both the spearmint and the forest tonalities. Let’s remember that peplum was totally IN last season, it’s totally IN this one and will absolutely be IN next spring summer.
We’ve already seen asymmetries before. But I like the way Stella has played with the “folded” dress/skirt. It definitely remembers me to the first skirt I made by myself.
But let’s proceed.
Low waist and long over-sized pockets are omnipresent in the tailoring of this collection, been accentuated by belts and mannish shirts. Remember that Stella is playing with the verticality of women’s body.
Consider the way Stella has worked with proportions in look number one. If you pay attention, you will notice how there’s a super sharp V on the model’s neckline, but at the bottom of the dress there’s an inverted V which gives a fresher look to that 3/4 skirt (which would otherwise look super serious!).
Now look at the bottom of those white pants in the middle. What do you see? Yes, it looks like somebody is wearing a pair of trousers over super-long gauze pants. It gives a casual feeling to the whole look.
By the way, do you see those circled shapes on the black jacket’s sleeves? They are transparent and you can see through them all the details of the spotted shirt the model is wearing.
Ready to move on?
I must confess I actually had to zoom these pictures to realize the print was green and not black as I initially thought. Yes, green is Stella McCartney’s new blue!
Here we get to see a clear example of the different repetitions we’ve been talking about during the post: low waist, circle shapes, over-sized pockets and cropped pants.
If you pay attention, you will realize that on the first and the third look the shoulder’s rounded shape is very similar. It gives an optical impression of a bigger arm without losing the continuity of the collection’s major highlight: ellipses. The shape of the tops of these two looks clearly remind me to what I called the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse (see the end of Stella McCartney’s FW12 review here), so the four gorgeous dresses of Stella’s last collection. Remember she used to play with different colours and shapes giving a very artistic and sporty overall feeling to the dresses, mainly focusing on the combination of different fabrics on the arms.
We’re almost finishing! Let’s continue.
It is not difficult to see that a certain mannish allure is present across the whole collection. Well, we see a very interesting contrast in the above picture though.
Stella McCartney is playing with a hidden sense of transparency improved by the selection of diamond-shaped embroideries. I find these three looks extremely sexy, even though they clearly have that masculine touch. How do we see it? You have to look at the length of the shirts one and two, and the spread collar on each and every shirt. I am not saying that spread collars are something only men wear, but they definitely give that Alexa Chung air we are all crazy about.
You will be thinking: what? Again? More ellipses? YES!
If you have a closer look at these three ellipses you will realize they are different than the ones we’ve seen before. These three are totally artistic: they are like a watercolour painting and create shadows in movement over models’ bodies, just like the ones you get with an extra drop of water in your paintbrush.
By this point we’re all aware about the fact that Stella McCartney is loving nature and it’s expressing that passion through this collection.
I believe these three colours represent an oversaturated summer nature: bright summer sun, green vegetation (yes, that hue we only get to see in the summertime), blue skies and oceans. And they play a contrast game with the transparent white silk organza which I think is lovely.
We’re almost there! Let’s continue.
And finally, the three looks which left me open mouthed, just like the two knitted looks in the middle of Stella McCartney’s FW12 Collection. Yes, those ones which totally have that afternoon-tea-with-Mary-Jane feeling.
But how do we get to see the relation between these three looks and the rest of the collection?, you will say. Easy: have a look at the shapes over the transparencies. Yes. ELLIPSES! But the great thing is that they are strategically situated, letting everybody see as much as you want to show, but without losing that imagine-the-rest-by-yourself impression.
So there you go! Now you will be able to detune Stella McCartney’s next collection by yourself and impress your friends with your knowledge! Keep following the Girl with a Banjo for other detailed fashion reviews.
Oh, and if you were wondering… Yes. I totally LOVE this collection.
Source: Pictures by Filippo Fior, GoRunway.com.