The Inspiration Behind the Fall 2014 Fashion Collections - by Fashiontribes


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While it's always fun to see what's fresh and fashionable on the catwalks each season, as a Fashion Futurist, I've always found the designers' inspirations just as interesting as the clothes themselves - perhaps more so. I curated the most interesting collection-inspirations from NYC, London, Milan and Paris & chose the 80 collections with the most compelling backstories.

For fall 2014, many designers seemed to long for a return "better" days - kind of memory "comfort food" if you will - which manifested as a particularly a strong vein of being inspired by "primitive" crafts-as-arts, outsider art including fiber art, retro ethnic weaving. whirling dervishes & tribal tales born along the Silk Road. A more modern manifestation of this hankering for paradise lost showed up in the form retro advertising, comic book-ready sensibilities and a backlash against the juggernaut of commerce, particularly in the garish McDonald's-themed looks by Jeremy Scott for Moschino and the giant Chanel-branded supermarket fully stocked with everything from soap to food to bathmats bearing the interlocking Cs that served as the maison's pre$entation venue.

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The Inspiration Behind the Fall 2014 Fashion Collections - by Fashiontribes

  1. 1. FALL 2014: The Inspiration Behind the Collections By Lesley Scott, & author of “The Future of You” (2014)
  2. 2. Proenza Schouler • Inspiration: the work of Ron Nagle at the Venice Biennale
  3. 3. Where many of New York's influential designers seemed to be under the sway of monochrome, Jack McCollough and Lazaro Hernandez instead took a detour into psychedelic. "It's about energy, humor, and speed," Hernandez said backstage. "We didn't overthink it; we said, 'Let's have fun.'" And they did, finding inspiration in ceramist Ron Nagle's work at the Venice Biennale, adding: "It got us on this whole trip." And when the eye travels, good things happen. Like this zippy collection. Proenza Schouler
  4. 4. Altuzarra • Inspiration: Sheila Hicks textiles from the 1970s
  5. 5. Although textile artist Sheila Hicks has been making her critically-acclaimed 2D and 3D fiber sculptures for decades, fashion designer Joseph Altuzarra only happened to discover her during Art Basel Miami Beach. He found himself inspired by her work from the 1970s and channeled it into colorful and beautifully lavish looks that integrated easily into his elegant aesthetic and unabashed love of luxurious fabrications. Altuzarra
  6. 6. Felder Felder • Inspiration: artist Gerhard Richter
  7. 7. When Eric Clapton put Gerhard Richter's Abstraktes Bild (809-4) up for auction at Sotheby's in 2012, it sold within five minutes and set a new record the work of a living artist: a cool £21.3 million. The Felder twins found themselves under this popular artist's sway this season, channeling his vibe into mesh panels, mohair and pop prints. Felder Felder
  8. 8. Fausto Puglisi • Inspiration: Kazimir Malevich & Sonia Delaunay
  9. 9. Fausto Puglisi is a colorful character. "I want to be a little Frank Sinatra of fashion—you know he was Sicilian, right?" said the Milan-based designer backstage. "This is my American dream." Dreaming of nation of technicolored immigrants, he sent out exuberant shapes in an explosion of brights inspired both by Malevich and Delaunay. Plus a little Ballets Russes. And via a few fun prints, even the Statue of Liberty made an appearance. Fausto Puglisi
  10. 10. Sportmax • Inspiration: Jackson Pollock
  11. 11. The magnificently messy paintings of Jackson Pollock railed against excessive luxury...which is why it's kind of ironic that Sportmax used his work to inspire this collection with its over-the-top energy. The bold prints, luxe textiles and densely- packed color created a sartorial statement that is the opposite of restraint. Sportmax
  12. 12. Roksanda Ilincic • Inspiration: the colorful modern art of Jessica Stockholder and Mel Bochner
  13. 13. Designer Roksanda Ilincic likes her modern art. She cited as influences the bold use of color by both Jessica Stockholder and Mel Bochner. The pairing of burgundy with blue would be an eye-catching way to sail through fall and brave the dreary doldrums of winter with some panache. Particularly if you slip on some of the Nicholas Kirkwood loafers that walked this colorful collection down the runway. Roksanda Ilincic Jessica Stockholder
  14. 14. 10 Crosby Derek Lam • Inspiration: West German lava pottery
  15. 15. Derek Lam's downtown-cool collection (which recently moved further uptown) was inspired by this weirdly-cool, mid-twentieth century West German lava pottery. With its garish colors, bizarre patterns and singular shapes, you either hate on it or love it. Design director Elizabeth Giardina apparently falls into the latter camp and managed to channel these offbeat objects into really cool clothes. Particularly awesome is the textural ombré brushed mohair wool that closely mirrors the ceramics. 10 Crosby Derek Lam
  16. 16. Calvin Klein Collection • Inspiration: surreal photographs of children by Loretta Lux
  17. 17. Loretta Lux (b. 1969) is a Monaco-based, East German born fine-art photographer known for her surreal images of young children. Her work includes interesting proportions, which Francisco Costa was scoping out to take Calvin Klein Collection in a hipper direction. "It felt like the clothes needed to be cooler, urban," he adds. And Polar Vortex ready, too, with tons of mohair coats, dresses and snuggly separates. Calvin Klein
  18. 18. John Rocha • Inspiration: French artist Pierre Soulages - "the painter of black"
  19. 19. Don't let John Rocha's diminutive stature fool ya. His aesthetic looms large and in charge, with volume-rich silhouettes adorned with yet more volume in the way of oversize hats, unruly ruffles and floral flourishes. He also loves the work of Pierre Soulages, a French artist known for his love of the dark side of the paint palette. And for some reason, it all just works. John Rocha
  20. 20. The Row • Inspiration: amazing 900 gram double- faced cashmere
  21. 21. If the term "900 gram double-faced cashmere" doesn't ring a bell, you're probably not shopping in the right spots. Suffice it to say if it shows up on the Olsens' The Row runway, it's the best in its class. Their quietly super- spendy label specializes in amazing fabrics and low-key designs for fashion'y jetsetters like themselves. When they laid hands on this amazing textile, they admit to being "instantly obsessed." The only trouble with slouchy ensembles like these is that they're so cozy looking, it's like being wrapped in your own cocoon...and you may never want to emerge again - until the next runway show by The Row, of course. The Row
  22. 22. Alexander McQueen • Inspiration: Wild Beauty
  23. 23. Corsets, construction, control. A gang of three Cs that Sarah Burton is over this season for Alexander McQueen. "I wanted to see the woman's face again," she explained backstage. "Free her a bit, touch her, feel her." The "wild beauty" she found herself inspired by emerged on a "catwalk" covered in heather and illuminated by moonlight, cocoony-trapeze silhouettes that were almost childlike in feel. Almost. Alexander McQueen
  24. 24. Alexander Wang • Inspiration: extreme conditions & survival
  25. 25. Although he cited hunting, mountain climbing & other sporty outdoor activities involving "extreme conditions and survival" as his inspiration, Wang's stuff will always be more suited to doing battle within the urban jungle. Particularly cool was the heat-activated leather used in the previous slide - it changes colors! To finish the show, more than a dozen models showcased similar ensembles made from this fabric that variously morphed from black to blue or from yellow to purple and then slowly faded. Alexander Wang
  26. 26. Giorgio Armani • Inspiration: Fade to Grey
  27. 27. Wow, a collection called "Fade to Grey" based entirely on gray flannel. How exciting. Not. Which makes one realize what a talent Giorgio Armani is to be able to take this most corporate-climber of fabrics and morph it into something so stylish. The splish- splashes of juicy lime green throughout were pretty much genius, helping to add zest without upsetting the serene. Giorgio Armani
  28. 28. Marchesa • Inspiration: a Scottish lass running through the Highlands in winter
  29. 29. A fun muse inspired Georgina Chapman and Keren Craig for fall: a "Scottish woman who's a little bit more disheveled in winter, with this static hair like she's running through the fields in the Highlands." But don't think Brigadoon or Braveheart. Rather than a twee tartanfest, this sassy lassie stays warm by layering on opulent, rich fabrics in the gorgeous colors of the local landscape. Marchesa Highland House by Ros Rowell
  30. 30. KTZ • Inspiration: North African Nomads
  31. 31. Even if you're not a Club Kid, you can still appreciate KTZ's voluminous pleated skirts, tees made from organza and leather cut into geometric patterns with lasers. Designer Marjan Pejoski was still inspired by the nomadic vibe for fall, particular the plush Moroccan Handira wedding blankets. Woven by hand using 100% wool, Berber women bling them up with sequins and wear them during the actual cerermony. Non-Berber globetrotters enjoy using them as rugs, bedspreads and caszh-chic throws. KTZ
  32. 32. EDUN • Inspiration: 19th century African textiles at the Quai Branly museum in Paris
  33. 33. Eco-minded Edun was founded by Bono & Ali Hewson, is owned by LVMH and is currently designed by Danielle Sherman, former design director of T by Alexander Wang and part of the launch team of the Olsen twin's super-spendy label, The Row. This season, her second, she visited the archives of the Quai Branly museum in Paris for a good look at their collection of African textiles dating back to the 1800s. "What was interesting to me," she notes, "were the natural, earthy colors." EDUN
  34. 34. Hermès • Inspiration: Persian carpets
  35. 35. The Hermès femme that Christophe Lemaire wardrobes so elegantly each season certainly loves to globetrot, has her own stash of cash and keeps her own council. If she Instagrams...if....and if it's a selfie (another big if), it's a way to introduce her followers to the latest fascinating individual she's met on her journey. This time, she's been sharing good, strong tea with her Mongolian tribal hosts and admiring the amazing collection of Persian carpets cozying up the inside of the family yurt. Hermès
  36. 36. Etro • Inspiration: the silk road
  37. 37. Okay so maybe Veronica Etro didn't literally channel the Silk Road proper, but her journey of inspiration this season was certainly well- appointed and a touch exotic, as always. The rich fabrics, adept layering and visual feast of patterns, embroidery, color, fur and fabulousness were all spot-on for the freewheeling globetrotter - wherever she the Winds of Fortune direct her to touch down come fall. Etro
  38. 38. J.W. Anderson • Inspiration: Cool Shapes
  39. 39. Designer Jonathan Anderson is a fan of making shapes. He talks about it a lot and his collections tend to toy with novel proportions and fresh silhouettes. Which is something that can either be offputting or put you squarely in the category of fan. Which, come to think of it, would make a cool shape- inspiration for an outfit. J.W. Anderson
  40. 40. Pringle of Scotland • Inspiration: 3D printing
  41. 41. What does one do with a heritage brand approaching its 200th anniversary to stay relevant - or perhaps even ahead of the fash curve? Current Creative Director Massimo Nicosia decided the time was right for Pringle of Scotland to explore 3-D printing. He teamed up with architect Richard Beckett and they used principles of engineering to create cool-looking twinsets and warm wool coats. Very next- level knitwear. And while it may not feel like cashmere, it's awesome in its own right. Pringle of Scotland
  42. 42. Threeasfour • Inspiration: Topography & quilting
  43. 43. From the ligaments and thumbprints of the human body to the wood, rocks and glaciers that make up the external topography, it was the idea of environment that inspired the gorgeous quilted pieces at Threeasfour. "The fingerprints told us what to do," observed one of the trio. "It's like we captured a cloud," added another. Whatever they may happen to call it, I call it fabulous. threeASFOUR
  44. 44. Christian Siriano • Inspiration: photographs of model Lisa Fonssagrives-Penn
  45. 45. Lisa Birgitta Bernstone was born in Sweden in 1911 and studied dance and art in Berlin. When she moved to Paris to study ballet, she was discovered in an elevator by a photographer and asked to model hats. Vogue got a hold of the images and helped turn her into a modeling legend. During the 30s, 40s & 50s, Lisa Fonssagrives-Penn earned more money than almost any other model of her day, as well as praise and acclaim. And she still continues to inspire. Most recently, Christian Siriano. "A friend sent me a photo of Lisa," he explained in a backstage interview, and he loved the "texture with light and shadow." And so, she became his muse for the season with a collection that looks like it walked directly off the set of one of Lisa's shoots. Christian Siriano
  46. 46. Trussardi • Inspiration: French New Wave films
  47. 47. Starting in the late 1950s and into the 60s, a group of fresh-faced French filmmakers began making movies that were the antithesis of the ponderous literary novels of the day. Their youthful filmic take on current social issues was shot on location if possible, using experimental techniques and especially hand-held. Dubbed the French New Wave or La Nouvelle Vague (everything sounds better in French), Jean-Luc Godard's Bande à Part and François Truffaut's Jules et Jim inspired Gaia Trussardi for fall. Her cool, menswear- chic clothes would definitely be something both Anna Karina's and Jeanne Moreau's characters would love to wear. Et moi aussi. Trussardi
  48. 48. Fashion East: Helen Lawrence • Goth meets Cavewoman
  49. 49. Knitwear has rising new star known as Helen Lawrence, who infused her usual dark Goth vibe with some fun cavegirl chic. The result? Kinda cartoony, kinda cool and kinda me-likey. A lot. Paired with leather skinnies and cool boots, this Fred Flintstone tunic would easily transition from updown to downtown - or vice versa. Helen Lawrence - Fashion East
  50. 50. House of Holland • Inspiration: debauched debutantes
  51. 51. Lifestyles of the born-rich and living- debauched never cease to fascinate. Kitsch king Henry Holland decided to round up a group of "House of Holland harlots" and outfit them in glam, often-stuffy fabrics which he treated with just enough disrespect to make them modern. And fun in that so-bad-it's-good way. House of Holland
  52. 52. Antonio Berardi • Inspiration: a drive toward minimalism
  53. 53. Okay so runway show notes tend to be rife with purple prose and high-falutin' metaphorical mysteries. Like using "minimalism" in the same breath as this collection - and yet...there is something undeniably zen about what Antonio Berardi put together for this season. A complex but at the same time uncomplicated elegance in chic color combinations with kickass footwear. Antonio Berardi
  54. 54. Rochas • Inspiration: classic French chic
  55. 55. When Marco Zanini moved to Schiaparelli, he was replaced by Alessandro Dell'Acqua. A Milan- based designer, he's trying to focus in on giving a recognizable sartorial signature to the "very French" vibe at Rochas, which is better known for its fragrance than fashion at present. Rochas
  56. 56. Paul Smith • Inspiration: the resourceful fashion creativity of women in the late-70s
  57. 57. Of all the reasons fashion designers channel the past - cool construction techniques (less often), inspiration (often), laziness (most of the time) - Paul Smith's stated reason for mining the late 1970s was on the less lame end of the scale. He is of the mind that during this period, women didn't have the luxury of fast fashion and the high street, so when it came to developing their personal style, they had to be more resourceful. A quality which is always in style. Paul Smith
  58. 58. Christian Dior • Inspiration: clothing codes
  59. 59. Raf Simons has long been fascinated with codes, from those who break them, like Alan Turing, who cracked WWII's Enigma Code, to the codes that hide in the everyday clothing we wear. And his fascination has certainly proved to be fertile ground for fabulous fashion, season after season after season at Christian Dior. Christian Dior
  60. 60. Zero + Maria Cornejo • Inspiration: school uniforms from her childhood in Chile
  61. 61. Growing up in Chile, Maria Cornejo spent many a year in wearing classic black pinafore dresses over crisp white shirts. She revisited this childhood sartorial staple in this collection, which marks her 15th anniversary. Naïveté does have a certain timeless charm that will no doubt appeal to her loyal fans like Cindy Sherman, Tilda Swinton, Miranda July, and Karen O. Zero + Maria Cornejo
  62. 62. Fashion East: Louise Alsop • Inspiration: East London street style
  63. 63. A newcomer this season to the Fashion East incubator was Louise Alsop. A young designer - figuratively & literally - she channeled her age group's youthful vibe that flows on the streets of East London. From tatts to the knuckles of street urchins, if it was cool, it walked the runway. Louise Alsop - Fashion East
  64. 64. Gary Graham • Inspiration: old pix of Keith Richards exiting the Rolling Stones’s private jet
  65. 65. Gary Graham is kind of a fash-insider label but definitely one worth knowing about if you like Victorian'ish stuff that sort of looks like you unearthed it in a really cool antiques shop. At this point, Keith Richards kind of qualifies as an antique (top shelf, of course) and one of Graham's cooler references for the fall collection was an old pic of Richards exiting the band's private jet (previous slide). It inspired this gorgeous jacket which has the same devil-may- care sensibility and trend-free feel. Gary Graham
  66. 66. Osman • Inspiration: Talitha Getty
  67. 67. Osman Yousefzada is better known in his native UK (he hails from Birmingham) than stateside. He graduated Central Saint Martins and continues to find inspiration in the costume and clothing of ancient cultures. As did this season's muse, Talitha Getty, the late-60s style icon married to the oil heir and and philanthropist John Paul Getty, Jr. Osman
  68. 68. Simone Rocha • Inspiration: a Punk Rock Anne Boleyn
  69. 69. Almost 500 years after her death, the rise and tumultuous fall of Anne Boleyn continues to fascinate, resonate, inspire. She was placed in the context of a punk court by designer Simone Rocha, and then outfitted in Tudor-inflected finery with some bite. Which feels just right. Simone Rocha
  70. 70. Mary Katrantzou • Heraldic emblems & social signifiers
  71. 71. Known for her visually arresting digi- prints, the designer gave the eyepopping part a rest this season in favor of "prints" of another kind: signs and symbols. Obvious signifiers are coats of arms but they can also include the professional butcher's apron, a tycoon's pinstripes and school uniforms. Katrantzou even went so far as to riff on men's rooms' signs to balance all the hoity-toity'ness of heraldic emblems with a lil' low-minded pop-culture. Mary Katrantzou
  72. 72. Bottega Veneta • Inspiration: Puzzles
  73. 73. During a pre-show interview backstage, Bottega Veneta designer, Tomas Maier, explained that fall was inspired by "puzzles." Which could be a fussy mess of #epicfail proportions in the wrong hands. Fortunately Maier is a ninja at making the convoluted look effortless, easy and completely desirable. Sassy, even. How he manages to consistently pull it off with such panache is, I think, the real puzzle. Bottega Veneta
  74. 74. Porsche Design • Inspiration: 1970s Alpine Wear
  75. 75. Chic clothing may not jump to mind when you hear Porsche Design, but just about everything else does, including watches, sunnies & luggage. The brand's creative director, Thomas Steinbrueck - formerly president of merchandising and design at Kenneth Cole - found himself resonating with both retro grooviness and futuristic flair. "The collection was inspired by late-'70s alpine wear, but it was more about the mood," he explains. "We wanted it to be retro-futuristic, not retro." Porsche Design
  76. 76. Markus Lupfer • Inspiration: a classic English holiday weekend at the seaside
  77. 77. He may have been born in Germany, but Markus Lupfer is quite the Anglophile. And the English, they do love their classic vacay weekends at seaside locales such as Brighton & Blackpool. Some of Lupfer's models sported fun, slogan- sweatshirts with "Bingo" and "One Sandwich Short of a Picnic" but beneath the breezy exterior lurked some serious style messages. Markus Lupfer
  78. 78. Chalayan • Inspiration: reenvisioning his physical office space
  79. 79. Ordinarily, were a designer to note that a particular collection was inspired by re-envisioning a journey through the physical space of his office, my response would be pretty unprintable. However, Hussein Chalayan ain't yo' ordinary fashion designer. Who knew an office could conjure up such stylish loveliness? Beautiful draping, lush fabrics, gauzy goodness, offbeat intarsia knits...this is one office I wouldn't mind spending more than 40 hours a week in. Chalayan
  80. 80. Vivienne Westwood Red Label • Inspiration: Fracking
  81. 81. A: Using a high-pressure water mixture - requiring TONS of water - to inject sand & potentially-carcinogenic chemicals deep into the earth and rock in order to release the shale gas within. Q: What is fracking & why is it so harmful? Short for "hydraulic fracturing", the fracking issue inspired Dame Westwood this season in her ongoing crusade to raise awareness of environmental issues before it's too late. "Fracking We Need To Talk" was the theme for Fall 2014, which spun a story about woman born into wealth but who remains engaged in the world. And eccentrically well- dressed. Vivienne Westwood Red Label
  82. 82. Iris Van Herpen • Inspiration: biopiracy
  83. 83. Consider: 30 % of the human genome is patented. "Pilfered" is the word Iris Van Herpen would probably choose and dubbed her collection "Biopiracy." It's not that she's an alarmist or anti-progress, she's just in favor of not being asleep about what's happening on the murky frontiers of biotech."It is just raising questions," she (modestly) said about her show, which included a runway flanked by models vacuum-sealed in upright sheets of plastic. "Bringing an explosion of the inside to the outside," she continued by way of explanation. Whatever the actual letters of this code, the overall language I understand. And am here to tell you that resistance is futile.Iris Van Herpen
  84. 84. Burberry Prorsum • Inspiration: the Bloomsbury Group
  85. 85. Virginia Woolf, John Maynard Keynes, E. M. Forster and Lytton Strachey were all part of the influential group of English writers, intellectuals, philosophers and artists known as the Bloomsbury Group. Mostly educated at Cambridge, they fancied themselves arbiters of aestheticism in early-twentieth-century Britain. They liked to hang out at a country estate called Charleston to carouse, be creative, write, compose and paint. The clothing on the Burberry runway seemed tailor-made for the artists' models to toss during breaks in being sketched so as not to have to be in the buff while strolling about Charleston's gardens. Burberry's Creative Director & now-CEO, Christopher Bailey, has a longtime passion for the Bloomsbury group. He not only collects Bloomsbury artists but is actively working with the trust that preserves Charleston. Burberry Prorsum
  86. 86. 3.1 Phillip Lim • Inspiration: his imaginary muse “Soleil”
  87. 87. Phillip Lim took a stroll on the sunny side of the street, taking the edge off any fall and winter chill by dreaming up a muse named Soleil and kitting her out with appropriately sunny gear. The macaron-pastel shades were particularly delicious, especially for warding off any cold weather doldrums. Life is short. Why not make it stylish - and colorful! 3.1 Phillip Lim
  88. 88. Tia Cibani • Inspiration: whirling dervishes
  89. 89. The practice of whirling as a form of worship or "dhikr" - meaning remembrance of God - emanates from Konya in Turkey and dates back to the Sufi followers of the 13th century Persian poet Rumi (Jalal ad-Din Muhammad Balkhi-Rumi). "Dervish" is a term for an initiate of that particular path. "I've always wanted to reference the whirling dervishes," said designer Tia Cibani before her show, which was decorated with rugs from the region and show-goers served mint tea and Turkish delights. Similarly delightful also were many of the exotic looks she showed, like this one. Tia Cibani
  90. 90. Valentino • Inspiration: rule-breaking women artists
  91. 91. Female artists Giosetta Fioroni, Carol Rama, and Carla Accardi were on the minds & mood boards of Maria Grazia Chiuri and Pierpaolo Piccioli. "They were rule breakers," explain the designing duo behind Valentino about these ladies of Italian Pop art from the sixties and seventies. "Nobody believed that women could be artists." Valentino
  92. 92. Ralph Lauren • Inspiration: the glamour of Old Hollywood, cowboys & Aztecs
  93. 93. Ralph Lauren can always be counted on to channel G-L-A-M-O-U-R. His cowboy obsession is a tad ho-hum at this point and Old Hollywood, well, there's nothing surprising there. But Aztec, now that's an interesting twist - especially in luxe fabrics like satin, brushed suede and Mongolian lamb. Ralph Lauren
  94. 94. Anna Sui • Inspiration: 1920s silent-movie queen, Anna May Wong
  95. 95. Anna May Wong was born Wong Liu Tsong ("Frosted Yellow Windows") in 1905, the Chinese-American daughter of a Chinatown laundryman. As Anna May Wong, her screen credits include the now-lost "Bits of Life" (1921) with Lon Chaney and "The Toll of the Sea" (also 1921), the tale of Madame Butterfly as told in Hollywood Technicolor. As the first Chinese-American movie star and queen of the silent movie era, she was known for her fiercely fashionable chinoiserie and Art Deco glam. All catnip to a color- & print-obsessed fashion hippie like Anna Sui. Anna Sui
  96. 96. Fendi • Inspiration: Billie Holiday singing “Violets for my Furs”
  97. 97. Karl Lagerfeld took somewhat of a romantic voyage at Fendi back to the day when it was customary for a women to receive a floral corsage from her man when embarking upon a train journey. "You bought me violets for my furs and there was blue in the wintry sky," sang Billie. "You pinned the violets to my furs and gave a lift to the crowds passing by. You smiled at me so sweetly. Since then one thought occurs That we fell in love completely...the day you bought me violets for my furs." Fendi
  98. 98. Tod’s • Inspiration: focusing on the fine-fabric qualities of luxury leather
  99. 99. The mega-talented Alessandra Facchinetti always has an interesting design point of view. Like using all that high-end leather at her disposal working for the luxury goods label Tod’s and coming up with something fresh. She noted after her show that she was more interested in the fabric-like qualities of leather rather than biz-as-usual and treating it like a skin. Which certainly gave a nice bit of edge to her classic silhouettes in cool colors. Tod’s
  100. 100. Tory Burch • Inspiration: her dad’s collection of armor
  101. 101. Who wouldn't love having an eccentric father whose hobby is collecting armor? And who wouldn't love to wear looks like this one? Tory Burch's surprisingly cool take on the subject adeptly translated the antique version into warrior wear suited to doing battle in the modern world. Love. Tory Burch
  102. 102. Dolce & Gabbana • Inspiration: Enchanted Sicily
  103. 103. When the Norman kings from the North invaded southern Italy, they brought with them their own myths and legends. According to Stefano Gabbana, this was when fairies entered Italy. Which is certainly charming inspiration for a Dolce & Gabbana collection brimming with just the right amount of fairy dust for most any wardrobe in need of a little magic to brave the winter doldrums in style. Dolce & Gabbana
  104. 104. Undercover • Inspiration: warmth & royalty
  105. 105. Some of us think about things like "warmth" and "royalty" one way. And then there's Jun Takahashi of Undercover. The crowns atop his models' heads were meticulously constructed from tiny braids. Where actual monarchs carry a jeweled sovereign's orb - the British one was created in 1661 for the coronation of Charles II & symbolizes their role as defender of religious faith - the mannequins at Undercover palmed a shiny, electronic version in red. Red was also employed as a juicy accent color; not only in the eerie red contact lenses with matching red mascara, but in the clothing. A lovely touch as red looks particularly striking paired with porcelain-blue. So, do I understand this collection? Heavens no. Do I love it? Hell yes. Undercover
  106. 106. Antonio Marras • Inspiration: wolves within
  107. 107. Under the full moon of the runway show design that shone on the catwalk proceedings below, Antonio Marras explored the shadowy world of wolves and wolf archetypes. The wolf in Little Red Riding Hood made an appearance, as did the lone wolf of the steppes which inspired Herman Hesse's Steppenwolf. Even the models were gussied up like the beautiful dual-natured replicant Rachael of Blade Runner. All wolves, both literal and figurative, and mysterious. Not the clothes though - though were beautiful (as usual) even to the non-predatory eye. Antonio Marras
  108. 108. Comme des Garç ons • Inspiration: MONSTER
  109. 109. "The theme of the collection this time is MONSTER," explains the consistently prescient and thoughtful Comme des Garçons designer, Rei Kawakubo. "It's not about the typical Monster you find in sci-fi and video games. The expression of the Monsters I have made has a much deeper meaning. The craziness of humanity, the fear we all have, the feeling of going beyond common sense, the absence of ordinariness, expressed by something extremely big, by something that could be ugly or beautiful. In other words, I wanted to question the established standards of beauty." Comme des Garçons
  110. 110. McQ Alexander McQueen • Inspiration: Tokyo & Manga Art
  111. 111. Manga artist Yoshiyasu Tamura was enlisted by designer Sarah Burton to create a vibrant print for the younger, zippier McQueen sibling brand. The sights and neon feel of Tokyo showed up on leather, denim, transparent nylon and even a puffer coat. Anyone know the street-slangy way to say "I want. A lot." McQ Alexander McQueen
  112. 112. Dsquared2 • Inspiration: the Lunatic Glam of the Valley of the Dolls
  113. 113. In his coverage of the Dsquared² show for, Tim Blanks noted that Shirley Bassey was loudly wailing "Tonight I gave the greatest performance of my life" 10 am. In the morning. "Right there was the very essence of extravagant female camp," he writes, "in the spirit of the mid-sixties finest slice of lunatic glamour, Valley of the Dolls." Seriously, what's not to love about that? Dsquared²
  114. 114. Andrew Gn • Inspiration: artist Yayoi Kusama
  115. 115. Pop-precursor artist Yayoi Kusama was probably most famous during the early 70s, when her way with psychedelic colors, repetition and pattern influenced no less than Claes Oldenburn and Warhol. After a period of being kind of forgotten, the world has once again remembered that one of the most important modern artists to come out of Japan is still alive! Andrew Gn recently fell under her spell, which certainly added a nice anime kick to his relentlessly classic aesthetic. Andrew Gn
  116. 116. Issey Miyake • Inspiration: "rhythmatic forest"
  117. 117. "Cloth harbors the power of life," read the Issey Miyake runway show notes. "Wrap yourself in it and feel an instantaneous metamorphosis into pure joy at the wonder of living." Um....if that means the abstract leaf graphic prints and infectious Art Deco feel that jazzed on down the runway...then whatever it may mean, I'm in. Issey Miyake
  118. 118. Alberta Ferretti • Inspiration: "a metamorphosis of nature and woman"
  119. 119. Alberta Ferretti lives in a small forest and decided to bring nature in for a catwalk she characterized as "a metamorphosis of nature and woman." Craftspeople from Florence worked a feather-strewn palette of fall greens and leaf-turning oranges into a lovely sartorial homage. "Like sunlight through trees," she observed. Indeed. Also lush, lovely and lustworthy. Alberta Ferretti
  120. 120. Akris • Inspiration: German photographer Thomas Ruff
  121. 121. The influential German photographer Thomas Ruff has been spanning genres for three decades, but is best known for his manipulation of existing images. His "Sterne" (stars) series inspired the photo- prints Albert Kriemler put to good use this season in a collection for Akris which is, as usual, on-trend but in a trendproof way. Akris
  122. 122. Versace • Inspiration: Parade Uniforms
  123. 123. Scratch a fashion icon and underneath, you'll discover a uniform. Just look at any reputable "Best Dressed" list, where the woman who haunt them (literally...for many of them are dearly departed at this point - Jackie O, Audrey Hepburn, Marilyn Monroe and Katharine Hepburn and Dorothy Dandridge) found their silhouette and stuck by it loyally. Like a good soldier, or maybe on the Versace runway, a toy soldier. But a smartly appointed one, even if the uniform idea thing was interpreted a tad to literally for my somewhat eclectic taste. Versace
  124. 124. Marni • Inspiration: the world of Consuelo Castiglioni
  125. 125. Marni is kind of an oddball label, but for rich-hippie type oddballs. Think Stevie Nicks in her prime with enough Made in Italy decadence (& craftsmanship) to temper any annoying American puritan tendencies. For fall, Consuelo Castiglioni made the collection about "our world, but more than usual." If you're looking to hoist your fashion freak flag, this is where you'll want to let 'er fly. Marni
  126. 126. Rick Owens • Inspiration: love, protection, communication - authentic “family” values
  127. 127. "I'm getting all New Agey in my own, abstract, do- it-yourself way," explained Rick Owens about his collection. Wha?? Did the high priest of apocalyptical chic decide to ditch the dark and switch sides? "Try and enjoy the serene benevolence of presenting a story of love," he emailed his models before the show. The plot thickens. The procession of cocoon-like capes, fabrics with a soft embrace and layered goodness resulted in a most satisfying denouement. All hail Love, the new black. Rick Owens
  128. 128. Stella McCartney • Inspiration: handwork
  129. 129. Shibori-dyed fabrics. Zipper embellishments. Mountain- climbing rope embroidered onto jackets. Drapey silk-cord fringe. The joy of the artisanal and the handcrafted were infused with just the right amount of tribal charm at Stella McCartney. This collection is perfect for the woman on the move who happens to be in the mood for some offbeat charm with her chic. Stella McCartney
  130. 130. Sonia Rykiel • Inspiration: Gertrude Stein
  131. 131. Rose is a rose is a rose is a rose. Loveliness extreme. Extra gaiters. Loveliness extreme. Sweetest ice-cream. Page ages page ages page ages. Wiped Wiped wire wire. Sweeter than peaches and pears and cream. Gertrude Stein penned these words in "Sacred Emily" (1922). Sonia Rykiel's artistic director, Geraldo da Conceicao, sees what he does the same way that Stein sees a rose as a rose is a rose. Now, whether you would consider items like a roomy bathrobe coat with great swathes of yak hair or a jacquard sweater festooned with a grid of roses to be "just clothes" - well, that depends in large part on what it is you normally spend your days (and nights) doing. Sonia Rykiel
  132. 132. Roberto Cavalli • Inspiration: 20s & 30s photographer Lee Miller
  133. 133. Lee Miller (1907-1977) was a New York-born model turned photographer of fashion & fine art in the 20s. Being stunning and talented has always gone over well in places like Paris, where they were mad for her. She worked as a correspondent for Vogue during WWII, covering the London Blitz, the liberation of Paris, and the concentration camps at Buchenwald and Dachau. A worthy, worthy muse for the surprisingly classy clothes oozing Jazz Age luxe at Roberto Cavalli. It would appear that being a history buff *suits* him. Roberto Cavalli
  134. 134. Céline • Inspiration: kickass women like Lee Miller & Hannah Höch
  135. 135. The previous slide shows photographer Lee Miller taking a bath in Hitler's tub. When she entered the apartment in Munich in 1945, it was occupied by Allied Forces and exactly as Hitler had left it, including portraits of himself everywhere (like on the tub ledge). Like Hannah Höch (below), a Weimar period Dada artist & originator of the photomontage, these ladies were fearless. "These women were doing things which were quite radical at the time, like wearing men's clothes, but which today seem quite normal," explains Phoebe Philo, who used the Miller photo as the jumping off point for this kickass Céline collection. "I very much wanted women in men's clothes, but it was a complex idea so we brought it back to a quite feminine silhouette." Céline
  136. 136. Carven • Inspiration: Dadaists like Blumenfeld, Picabia & Man Ray
  137. 137. Dadaists such as Blumenfeld, Picabia, and Man Ray were all name-checked by Carven’s Guillaume Henry as helping inspire this retro'ish collection which seemed to summon the ghosts of wartime fashion glamour. People claim to want peace, but the fab footwear as well as some of the bolder prints could easily induce even the most zen fashionistas to head straight for the shopping warpath. Carven
  138. 138. Preen By Thornton Bregazzi • Inspiration: Star Wars
  139. 139. In the #ohlightenupalready category of things, I would place the fashion writer who sniffed about "erstwhile high-fashion" bearing the image of Darth Vadar as being "gimmicky" and possibly smacking of "corporate bullying." Um, it's just fashion, it depicts aspects of the collective unconscious, meaning that what erstwhile ("in the past" or "former") has to do with anything, I'm unsure. What I am sure of is that I think it would be fun to pay playful sartorial homage to the Dark Side. Preen
  140. 140. Rodarte • Inspiration: Star Wars
  141. 141. A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away there occurred an epic tale we all still love. Including the Rodarte sisters, who took the stuffing out of boring eveningwear this season with awesome Star Wars-print gowns. "Silly" sniffed the (stuffy) reviewer. Oh, lighten up already. If red carpet event you have and dress you need - and cheeky you are...hmmmmm? - then epic gown I've found for you to steal the show in. Rodarte
  142. 142. Toga • Inspiration: Pioneer America through the Lens of the Spaghetti Western
  143. 143. For many non-Americans, the culture and lore of the Wild West holds endless fascination. Toga designer Yasuko Furuta explored pioneer America through the lens of the spaghetti Western and came up with some really cool looks. Perhaps non dude-ranch ready, but certainly spot-on for round-ups in the real world. Toga
  144. 144. Fashion East: Ashley Williams • Inspiration: the Culture of the Deep South
  145. 145. Visiting kin for a few months in Mississippi, Ashley Williams must have been bitten by the local rodeo- queen glamour-girl vibe. The equine motif even carried into the fringe/mane (previous slide), which made for a clever touch. Definitely kitschy/cool, but sometimes that's just the look a girl needs to brave the rodeo that life often is. Ashley Williams - Fashion East
  146. 146. Peter Jensen • Inspiration: iconic 70s Faye Dunaway moments
  147. 147. When Faye Dunaway won her Oscar for "Network," Terry O'Neill snapped the now-iconic image (previous slide) of the star the following day, soaking it all in by the Beverly Hills Hotel pool. That small but mighty glint of gold on the table? Her statuette, of course - suitably accessorized with her stiletto spike heels and "movie star" robe first thing in morning. Peter Jensen similarly paid homage to the most beloved Faye flicks, including "The Thomas Crown Affair" with Steve McQueen and her campy turn as that wire-hanger hater Joan Crawford in "Mommie Dearest." Peter Jensen
  148. 148. Prada • Inspiration: Rainer Werner Fassbinder’s "Die Bitteren Tränen der Petra von Kant” (1972)
  149. 149. In the early 1970s, Rainer Werner Fassbinder brought his decadent, sadomasochistic & richly-dressed tale of tortured love to the screen. "Die Bitteren Tränen der Petra von Kant" is the 13th of 33 films he made during his short life; this season, it lives on via the Prada runway. "His humanity, his love of culture, his love of telling a story," enthused Miuccia Prada who recently appears to have gone on a Fassbinder binge. "I had so much fun watching all those movies. They gave me a relationship with something less fancy, more dark." Prada
  150. 150. Costume National • Inspiration: Cool Woman
  151. 151. Adorning designer Ennio Capasa's mood board at Costume National were pix of the architecture of Frank Gehry, a close-up of an Anish Kapoor sculpture and images from the heyday of Debbie Harry and Patti Smith, Capasa's "cool" ladies of the moment. "They were women who mixed for the first time in a very modern way this men's energy," he explained. Costume National
  152. 152. The Elder Statesman • Inspiration: hey, it’s Miller Time!
  153. 153. "You know that moment in the day when you sit down for a drink and it tastes like the best drink you've ever had?" asked The Elder Statesman designer Greg Chait. "That's when this stuff is for." The cashmere-obsessed winner of the 2012 CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund limited his knitwear collection to tops only. The palette was restricted to neutrals - black, white, and gray - and the fabric featherlight. "I don't like things that are heavy for the sake of being heavy," he continues. "I knew I wanted the pieces to float." Well-heeled hipsters will be lining up for his "Beer" logo'd stuff which may look like just another sweater - until you fondle the fabric, inducing Shock #1...and then get a gander at the pricetag for Shock #2. The Elder Statesman
  154. 154. Saint Laurent • Inspiration: Californian artist John Baldessari
  155. 155. Octogenarian John Baldessari has been appropriating and retooling found art for a while now. Longer than Hedi Slimane at Saint Laurent, certainly, who is noted (and a tad infamous at this point) for his obsession with youth culture, from which he liberally borrows (and borrows and borrows). But despite their difference in age, both men seem to have been separated at birth when it comes to their magpie'ish take-n-repurpose ways. Saint Laurent
  156. 156. Bally • Inspiration: their classic brand DNA
  157. 157. The Swiss brand's new design director, Pablo Coppola, was previously at Christian Dior and Tom Ford, which made for a well-attended debut by curious editors. Known as an accessories and shoe brand, Coppola described the clothing at Bally as "accessories to the accessories," kind of making them seem like an afterthought - which they weren't. Rather, the timelessly-classic collection felt more like a return to the days when Bally ran those wonderful illustrated ads. Bally
  158. 158. Moschino • Inspiration: Consumer Culture
  159. 159. Jeremy Scott is no Franco Moschino. Where Moschino was ascerbic and pointed in his fashion commentary on consumerism, Jeremy Scott approaches junk culture more like a kid-connoisseur. The latter's mutant golden arches and literal Sponge Bob looks and Frito-Lay frocks are, to me, less a worthy continuation of the Franco days and more a symptom of the idiocracy in which we live. Moschino
  160. 160. Chanel • Inspiration: all the world’s a super-store
  161. 161. The most newsworthy part of the Chanel show is probably what happened afterward: the supermarket setting was looted by the well- heeled attendees. And what they wanted most were the doormats which said "Mademoiselle Prive." The shopping-center theme of the show made for a supermarket-like variety of looks, all on-trend and ready-to-move - which Karl Lagerfeld is exceptional at. I found it fascinating, though, that of the various "supermarket" show props which were Chanel'ized and lined the shelves, it was the doormats which incited such a fashion frenzy. Strange creatures, fashion folk. Chanel
  162. 162. About Lesley Scott • Lesley is a 5.0 Fashion Futurist & the eccentric EIC of She writes, blogs & podcasts daily using the lens of today’s tribes of Fashionland to look at the sweeping trends that are shaping tomorrow. • Her latest book is "THE FUTURE OF YOU" (2014) - covers all the hot technologies & deep trends that will impact your life in body, mind & spirit.
  163. 163. CONTACT • Blog & Daily Podcast: • RSS: feed:// • On Stitcher: • Channel Curator for • Regular Contributor to • Twitter: @Fashiontribes • Facebook: • LinkedIn: • Email: