Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Spring ’13: Lela Rose Plays With the Duality of Lights

September 9, 2012 • Fashion Blog, Fashion Shows, New York Fashion Week Spring '13

Summary: For Lela Rose‘s Spring/Summer 2013 ready-to-wear collection, the designer used her skillset the best way she knows how: by creating perennial tea-dresses for everyone. Doing a complete 180 from last season’s architectural seams and asymmetric hems, this collection gathered more of the designer’s lighter moods. Pale pinks and lilac organza gowns dominated while edgy spider lace and chainlink shoulder details toned down the saccharine qualities.

Taking inspiration from the juxtaposition of lightness and mass from the works of American artist Jim Hodges, the collection pairs light and dark pieces. Hodges’ colorful and simplistic pieces are reflections of the fragility of the human experience, as seen in the diaphanous voile prints, translucent floral embroideries and withering landscapes layered onto feminine and ladylike organza pieces. One of Hodges’ signature traits were placing curtains of flowers and woven webs of chain. This helped set the tone with pairing reflected floral prints and spider lace for more of a modern, edgy effect. Densely layered camouflage landscapes hinted to the artist’s preoccupation with picturing the world in its most abstract form.

Mirror silhouettes were first and forefront. A big trend seen on the runways this season, Lela Rose took it in a bit of a different direction using the guipure lace, penciled-in seams and linear structure to create an of-the-moment touch and less of a vintage re-hash which we’ve all seen enough of already. By taking these elements and the color palette of dusty pastels and bright camo-prints, it seemed like very few misses in a runway show full of hits. The colors and lightness of the collection played too much with the thoughts of spring, almost taking it to be literal. The bare face makeup and low and loose ponytail played with the casual nature of the look, sometimes looking almost too sloppily done. Some pieces called for a more formal look. I kept being reminded of the Jenny Packham effect: very cutesy with dark edge. Sometimes it pays off beautifully and other times it ends up looking like a desperate attempt to stray from the rut the designer has created for themselves. I’d say this collection is about 50/50 in both directions.

Fabrics & Textures: tweed, cotton poplin, knit, jacquard, matelasse, plaid, amaranth, floral, cotton, chainlink, guipure lace, tulle, organza, spider lace, chiffon

Colors: sunflower, printed camouflage, bright coral, ink blue, abstract landscape, cool lilac, black, ivory, dusty grey, silver, faded petal

Key Looks: Grass green woven gazar draped dress with webbed chain neckline; Silver dusted spider lace blouse and web trimmed trousers; Ink blue etched landscape full skirt dress

– Taneisha Jordan

Photos: WWD

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