For Spring 2013, designer Victoria Bartlett stuck to the sporty aesthetic that always sets her apart from the rest. Baggy silhouettes, colorblocking, sheer fabrics, and VPL's signature bras made strong cameos on the catwalk. Models wore colorblocked sandals and harness-like headbands as eccentric accessories. The hooded anoraks, sheer jumpsuits, parachute-inspired maxi skirts, cropped sweaters, and drawstring dresses were all designed for the off-kilter fashion girl that has a major sporty side. The color palette was mostly neutrals with pops of bright yellow, orange, and mint. Solids ruled the VPL runway, but bursts of abstract stripes were a surprising addition.
Victoria Bartlett has cornered the knit market with her on-trend, sexy spin on the classic sweater, and the VPL by Victoria Bartlett Fall '12 collection gave us many more iterations to love. Known for her body-conscious silhouettes and athletic aesthetic, the designer offered up avant-garde, futuristic chic with ornate spiderweb-inspired cable-knit pieces, drapey cowl-neck tops and dresses, and bright pops of color and metallic sheen. Models also wore tight, solid leggings layered with strong-shoulder sweaters, shin guards, and of course VPL's signature colorblock underpinnings — looking almost ready for a battle. Get the full breakdown below.
- Trends: Cutouts, spiderweb-esque knitting, paper bag details, asymmetrical sleeves.
- Colors: Cream, charcoal gray, mauve, yellow, tan, aubergine.
- Key Piece: The one-piece gray cable-knit jumpsuit is amazing — like après-ski for the Jetsons.
- Accessories: Jersey shin guards, loose leather ankle boots, space-age collar necklaces.
- Who Would Wear It: Risk-taking style stars like Gwen Stefani and Rihanna.
>> VPL's sporty aesthetic remains in tact for Fall 2012. Designer Victoria Bartlett sent her signature innerwear-as-outerwear aesthetic down the catwalk, but this season's offering was updated with extreme draping, heavy asymmetry, chunky knits, and earthy tones. Yellow and a few printed pieces were also in the mix, providing contrast to all the sportiness. Fall's pieces — some wearable, others better left to the models — are for the girl who doesn't mind showing off her figure.
>> Budget cuts brought fewer European retailers to New York Fashion Week and fewer US retailers to London Fashion Week — Julie Gilhart of Barneys, for one — so instead, designers are meeting them at the one Fashion Week they all can't miss: Paris.
Those from New York heading across the seas to meet with potential buyers and hopefully secure sales are Brian Reyes, Alexander Wang, and Victoria Bartlett of VPL, who are all sharing a space, plus Elise Overland, Jason Wu, Erin Fetherston, and Justin Giunta of Subversive Jewelry. Diane von Furstenberg and Philip Crangi have already been spotted together at Tuileries, but The Ritz Paris is said to be the unofficial headquarters of retailer-designer-meet-and-greet activity.
The British Fashion Council is also investing itself in a trip to Paris — starting Friday, designers such as House of Holland, Osman Yousefzada, Felder Felder and Louise Gray will reside at the JTM Gallery on Rue de Richelieu, where international fashion press and buyers will have a second chance to peruse the collections; the hope, of course, is to increase investment in London designers.
>> Victoria Bartlett, who has dubbed the Fall 2009 collection for her sportswear-cum-undergarment line VPL "Exquisite Corpse," is keeping a collaboration from last season very much alive. Joining the ever-growing list of jewelry partnerships this season, Bartlett tapped arts-and-crafts-style specialist Lizzie Fortunato Jewels for a second round, resulting in an assortment of blocky, geometric pieces, banded bangles, and fabric ornaments to go with her "shifted Picasso women" theme.
If you need a 2009 calendar, let me suggest the most fashionable out there: the W Hotels/CFDA 2009 Calendar ($15). What makes this more special than others? For one, it's designed to look like a sketchbook, includes blank sketch pages, and has room to hold a pencil.
Coolest part, 12 designers, — Diane von Furstenberg, the Rag & Bone boys, Victoria Bartlett — were asked to contribute an exclusive image that has inspired their creative process. Plus, 100 percent of the proceeds will be donated to the CFDA Foundation. I can't think of one reason not to buy this calendar.
Victoria Barlett continues to evolve her innerwear as outerwear aesthetic in her Spring 2009 collection, while still heavily utilitarian this collection has a touch more fun than seasons past even as it retains traditional comfort.