Paul Smith; What’s Going On?

“A modern girl can wear these clothes,” said Smith, backstage after his Spring/Summer 2015 offerings had been laid out on the catwalk. “The fabrics were linen or cotton but there was a structure about them which gave them this bounce and they had life. She’s not looking for attention through her clothing. She’s happy in her own skin.”

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Indeed, there was nothing unnecessarily complicated about this collection; nothing was trying too hard to grab attention, nothing was fighting with anything else. This was normcore all over, and proud of it.

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Loose tailored silhouettes, dropped-waist pleated dresses, flat sandals, big pockets and leather across-body bags were all made for the busy urban commuter; comfortable, easy, but elegant nonetheless. “Its effortless, it’s all about being effortless, did you see how the models just naturally put their hands in their pockets?” Paul Smith pointed out.

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The palette, too, was subtle, consisting of muted neutrals with the occasional kick of orange. There were no crazy patterns, no showing off; stripes dominated, elongating the shapes of the clothes, which were draped over eachother in loose, casually cool layers.

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The designer injected a little femininity into pieces (which largely borrowed from the men) with panels of sheer silk in skirts and blouses. Fringing decorated the hems of tops, falling over the mannish trousers in a beautiful, effortless way, whilst pretty floral details ensured that these designs felt oh-so fresh and summery.

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“The idea is to generate new ideas under pressure,” the designer said, after the show had closed. “You have to avoid becoming the hamster in the wheel.” Great advice.

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