If it's not see-through, it's not couture--at least that's what you would think, looking at the Fall 2009 runways. Transparent black and white looks were popular, as almost everyone included them in their collections. Although this seems a classic direction to take, the transparency trend may also have been tipped off by Chanel's stellar Spring 2009 couture collection, which included quite a few gauzy transparent looks. Regardless, it's safe to say that black tie events everywhere are in for a seductive treat.
Transparency is in full swing this season and the most accessible manifestation is a classic bed jacket. Some are more structured, like those from Akris and Marni, while others call up lingerie silhouettes with ruffles and pale colors. Whether you prefer something vintage-inspired or more futuristic, we find this piece a stylish addition to any wardrobe. Plus, it will keep you cool in the warm weather and roll up inside your handbag should you decide to take it off.
Balmain might have been barelegged yesterday, but if Nina Ricci and Balenciaga have anything to do with it, women will pair all of their slinky and short frocks with sheer black hosiery next season. Oliver Theyskens' Spring 09 collection for Nina Ricci propelled this trend into motion, and we're glad to see many designers doing it this season. It's affordable and sexy and, really, we don't think we're alone when we say that the black opaque look is kind of overdone.
In London, modern and minimal looks ruled and graphic transparency was a major trend. Like luxe turned inside out, transparent, colorless fabrics communicated a need for something special without even a hint of vulgarity. This season London was all about the personal, forward-looking fashion statement.
As caught up as we might be with the Fall 2009 season, we can't help but notice all of the best Spring 2009 pieces appearing online. Particularly noticeable are the bad girl frocks that appeared on the Spring catwalks by way of transparency, cut-out details, and body-con silhouettes. Judging by the House of Holland number M.I.A. wore to the Grammy's this weekend, and the $12,000 dollar white Balmain frock which is already sold out on Net-a-Porter--we're pretty sure we're not alone in our love for this trend.
Transparency trends have made their way through various seasons and fashion weeks without anyone tiring of them. This Fall 2009 we noticed a couple of instances of sheer loose hosiery in Stockholm. We love not only the DIY potential that this look has, but also the chic carelessness that it conveys. For a fashionista who aligns herself with Alexander Wang, for instance, this look is sure to please.
Only in fashion could something so insubstantial come with a 40,000 price tag. In all honesty though, we're happy to see the transparency trend carrying through the Haute Couture shows. Modern, minimal, clean this look leaves a lot of room for creative interpretation without ever eliciting the desire to be excessive.
Ruffles, transparency, and slinky fabrics were all present on the Spring 09 catwalks and we have to say--the combinations are just lovely. Nothing will take you from cold weather to warm more elegantly than these pieces. Layer them now and save them for evening affairs and then, come summer, pair them with cotton basics and moisturizer and hit the street. Perfection.
We've been trying to imagine the Spring 09 trends the way a seven year old shakes their presents under the christmas tree. Transparency is one we've been thinking about. Transparency, the break-out trend for Spring 08, has pushed on strongly enough. We predict the numbers will be high come Spring 09. The trend-forecasting seminars always tell you that the trends for next season are the same as they were two seasons previous. No miraculous discoveries--just summaries of what, because of various websites, we've seen plenty of already. So our thoughts on transparency aren't unsupported. Just in case a little evidence is needed, however, here's some of what we've seen since Spring 08.
Fall is a season that calls for heavier layers and so transparency is necessarily peripheral because of its impracticality. We did, however, see plenty of it crop up on evening frocks and on blouses that could be easily layered. Ashleigh Verrier used it on feminine frocks that were made season-appropriate by way of fur stoles and thick hosiery. On the darker side of things Alexander Wang used it on shell tanks and leggings in many of his Fall looks and Preen (shown left) used transparency despite every other aspect of the collection being wintery perfection.
Then came Resort and with warmer weather; more freer usage of the textile. Christian Dior used generous portions of transparency for his cruise ship-worthy evening gowns. Chanel, on the other hand, stuck to mini-frocks that were prefect for the Miami-staged runway show. Calvin Klein (shown right), our favorite by far, showed a few examples of transparency in the colorless, structured collection.
Finally menswear came along and gave us the duds that will sit on the other side of the boutique and closet and dresser drawer to ours, come Spring 09. Transparency--check. We saw it unabashed and blazing from Givenchy, we saw it in lace from Yohji Yamamoto, and from Costume National (shown left) masquerading as a normal work shirt--complete with blazer and tie.
We think it's time to stop shaking the present now. We're pretty sure we know what we're getting when it's time to open the gifts. You never know though, like when you're a kid, there's always one that surprises you...
Chris Han, one of the subjects for our pre-fashion week video series, showed her A/W 08 collection in the tents last night. Angelic images served as inspiration for the collection and if it were someone else, you might expect weightless frocks and feathered headbands. Han, though, presented a collection that was angelic in a darker, more classical sense. The pieces, a dusty plum transparent shell top, a pair of sleek wool trousers, a stained glass yellow blouse, came together to create a collection that was more dynamic than one would expect to come from angels (though not from Han). Though some textures where particularly high fashion most of the collection was wearable and accessible.