It is true when they say that the fabric lays the foundation of the garment and that the details are what make it stand out in exceptional ways. The Resort 2016 collections pointed towards more subtle and chic elements than over-the-top ones, leaving aside the exaggerated ruffles that most designers swore by. Silhouette shapes were played around with by using details on the back, hemline and neckline to transform an otherwise plain silhouette into an appealing one, without adding heavy surface ornamentation, variation came though by simple lace, pleats and knots. As the SS’16 womenswear collections commence, we will be seeing these details in full-bloom on the runways…
Last year’s bandeau trend might have inspired the neckline of the season which is, undoubtedly, the off-shoulder. Without showing too much skin, the simple-cut outfits accompanied the trend perfectly. Both, Marc Jacobs and, Camilla and Marc used this detail on long dresses but to different effects, while the former’s had a futuristic embellished look, the latter preferred a softer vibe in an allwhite ensemble which boasted of a frilly hem and bishop sleeves. Christopher Kane designed for someone on-the-go and used patterned lace on the off-shoulder neck to lift the outfit. It was Givenchy’s Riccardo Tisci who used draping on a white pristine corset top that was the most interesting and where the sleeves started below the main bodice, romanticizing the entire look.
The silhouettes might be minimal and have clean-cut lines but the back detailing is anything but simple. Designers adorned the back with several different turns and twists that made it more interesting. While Edun stuck to the popular criss-cross element, Narciso Rodriguez went a step further by adding a silhouette slit on top of that. Unexpected bows showed up at Lanvin and No. 21 that immediately transformed the looks from being sultry to charming, and Joseph simply made do with thin strings to accentuate the back. It came as no surprise when Rosie Assoulin presented her exaggerated version in the form of several cutouts to a white top that beautifully resembled the petals of a blooming flower. Surface ornamentation took a backseat and experimenting with the silhouette was given more preference.
This trend was made popular with the whole influx of the Japanese culture making its way into fashion with Obi belts being a rage in the fall season. Now introduced in a more western way, the knotted belt was added to suits and midi-length dresses, diversifying further to jackets, tops, culottes and shirts. Rosie Assoulin took the creative route by knotting up pants with gigantic bows and using a side knot on the top of an asymmetric separate. Stella McCartney opted for an exaggerated knot on her black outfits with Thakoon designing a chic knotted crop top, which would look perfect for the summer. While Fendi kept things traditional and styled shorts and suits with a knotted belt, it was Preen by Thornton Bregazzi who created an interesting pattern play on his diaphanous belted dress.
Culottes have enjoyed their reign for a little over two seasons now and it comes as no surprise that the next shape isn’t too far off. While the cropped length remains the same as before, the flared detail is what stands out. The shape of the pants is fitted or whittled from the leg and only flares out at the hem. This could be called a shorter version of the bellbottom. While this detail was carried out in solid colours for formalwear like Theory did, prints were explored too, in true 70s fashion by Michael Kors and Giambattista Valli. This low key take on Woodstock can be implemented on almost any fabric, and the perfect example would be Alexander Wang who designed denim flares.
A clear trend in the Resort 2016 collections was that of colour clashing where there was a bit of art, lots of prints and pleats that created colour blocking and as a result, visual chaos. Sunburst pleats were used to create a gradual flared effect on dresses and long summer gowns by designers. Gucci advanced their demure looks by sending out models in A-line pleated skirts merged with patterned lace that not only brought out the prints, but also the colours, Valentino and Bibhu Mohapatra used abstract prints on maxi dresses, whereas, Altuzarra went for a more subtle effect. Michael Kors kept it clean with horizontal strips of colour-blocked shades on pleats and Donatella Versace presented the same technique but with a vivid floral print on short Twiggy-like dresses and preppy skirts.