Usually it’s the Spring/Summer runway shows that tickle the fancy — the very essence of the warmer season engenders a sunny headiness — the expected polka dots, stripes, geometrics, and flowers all are hallmarks of the hotter months, and they lift the gray veil of winter. But this year, for the Fall/Winter 2013-14 catwalks, designers played with their audiences and raised their spirits, despite the traditional somber palette and the customary weight (literal and figurative) of the clothing.
Alber Elbaz at Lanvin sent his mannequins down the runway with bold bling — cascades of necklaces and belts that were emblazoned with heady headlines (Love, Happy, Hot, Cool!) in heavy metal or bright colors, in script and block. And at Marc Jacobs, the designer teased the audience’s sensibilities, equipping the show with a gigantic Olafur Eliasson light sculpture that sucked the color from the models’ outfits, so that they seemed to all be wearing sepia or half tones!
The runways, of course, were filled with clothing that was true to the season: Coats ruled, at Chanel, Jil Sander, Derek Lam, Altuzarra, Tommy Hilfiger, Stella McCartney, Max Mara, and fur and leather reigned supreme everywhere, including at Nina Ricci, Prabal Gurung, Lanvin, Balenciaga, Roberto Cavalli, Saint Laurent, Valentino, Ralph Lauren, Junya Watanabe, Michael Kors, Haider Ackermann, and Blumarine. Lots of man-tailoring dotted the landing strips, from 3.1 Phillip Lim, Carolina Herrera, Rick Owens, Jason Wu, and Band of Outsiders, and that was tempered with occasional lingerie looks from Givenchy, Louis Vuitton, Céline, and Christian Dior. Grays, tweeds, and neutrals dominated everywhere — at Rochas, Marni, Donna Karan, Reed Krakoff, Thakoon, and Missoni, and occasionally a bold scarlet, fuchsia, or burgundy silhouette popped out, as at Etro, Burberry Prorsum, and Miu Miu.
Here are the projections of the season, as interpreted by some of today’s outstanding design magicians.