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Fashion Police Files
Pre-Fall 2013 : 1 A+O - J. Wu 
Fri, 11th Jan 2013
Firebird purple


The Pre-Fall Collections for 2013 are coming to an end gradually this week, but of course, what with one thing and another, I have been delayed in picking my red carpet predictions from these runway shows...however, I have got my thing together and here is part 1, looking at the collections of Alice + Olivia, Badgley Mischka, Carlos Miele, Carolina Herrera, who was responsible for the amazing gown above, Christopher Kane, Karl Lagerfeld for Chanel of course, Donna Karan, the Houses of Emilio Pucci and Gucci, and finally Jason Wu...

Here's a new name to this journal, but not new to Hollywood of course - designer Stacey Bendet is the very last word in cutting edge cute - she is similar to what Alice Temperley used to be to the young London set a few years ago...short mini-dresses with full skirts embellished with bits of lace and beading - you may remember the gorgeous little cocktail dress that Zendaya Coleman wore to the American Music Awards last November - she was the third star to wear that particular dress, and the latest star is Rumer Willis who wore a black and silver diagonal stripe gown to the People's Choice Awards this week - all Alice + Olivia designs !!

From her Pre-Fall collection, I have picked out a small selection of sure-fire dresses that all have that winning quality for a red carpet appearance, in my view...firstly, a couple of dinky little shorties :-


Secondly, three amazingly sophisticated full length evening gowns which I love, especially the slinky beaded number with a beautifully cut matching leather jacket, both in cherry red..


The design duo Mark Badgley and James Mischka drew inspiration from ancient Mayan art for their Pre-Fall Collection, with astoundingly beautiful results !! I loved these designs, but I think it will be a confident personality who needs to wear them successfully, as they are very bold, especially the black/gold and red/gold dresses - the gold designs are fanciful, but pretty big and strong. Geometrics usually makes for a memorable dress, so the Mayan-inspired designs will be for someone who wants to be remembered on the red carpets this Spring. 
Otherwise, there were quite a few really beautiful black dresses which will also be winners, especially the one with a cape, decorated with fine chains across the shoulders - how unusual !!






Here's an interesting take on one design, done in two very different treatments - the first is a straightforward print in gold and silver on white, and the second is the same design exactly, done in a glittery finish, maybe be beading ? We need a really good close-up shot to see..


Carlos Miele went down a much softer route after all his bright animal prints of the Spring 2013 Collection, and this is a direction I really love for him - the finely pleated chiffons and gauzy fabrics with subtle-toned prints, some of them set off with quite bold beading on the bodice, were an absolute delight - I particularly loved the third dress in soft blue-grey with crystal beading all over the bodice and the fine pleats falling softly from that diagonal seam - really graceful and elegant !!



His prints were watery shades of aqua, turquoise, blue-grey and mocha, mixed with metallic tones of copper and gold...and many of the necklines and bodices were embellished with heavy beading in colours to match !!


He also had some black dresses of course - these were the two best ones:-


Carolinas Herrera came out with a 1950s inspired collection featuring several big-skirted gowns with interesting prints, especially the second one in here, with its over-sized spots of various shades, all overlapping to make new colours - how interesting and unusual - and a really great red carpet dress !!


Here are two beautiful midnight-blue dresses embellished with sparkly crystals and star motifs at the waist.


This last pick from Carolina Herrera is this amazing, big and bold, black and white floral print - a real eye-catcher for the Oscars maybe?!!

Wow - just wow !!
I loved this collection with a passion, even though I would be willing to bet my entire month's salary that nothing from it will get anywhere near a red carpet !!
Inspired by the Scottish Highlands, it is so costumey and theatrical that most of it will feel like a dressing-up box - but no matter !! It's marvellously sumptuous and rich, and gives the impression that we have been transported back into Tudor times, so fans of historical costume will love it all....
Fittingly, the runway show was held in Linlithgow Palace, up near Edinburgh, which was where Mary, Queen of Scots was born. The show itself was held in the ruins of the Great Hall (now open to the sky after being blown to kingdom come back in Hanoverian times !!) After the show, everyone went down to the huge marquee set up outside for dinner - all 400 guests !!
Of course, Karl Lagerfeld is an absolute master of this kind of themed collection, and the choice of venue was so inspired - here's what he had to say:-

"I loved the location and I must say the way the show was staged was exactly what I wanted. It was very interesting to use it for a show. I wanted the rough romance of this beautiful place."

Coco Chanel had links with Scotland herself of course - she made herself the queen of Scottish fabrics during the time she spent in the country between 1924 and 1931, when she was the companion of the Duke of Westminster, and busy defining a new age of fashion. She was strongly influenced by Highland colour, inspired by her aristocratic lover's wardrobe of tweed and Fair Isle knitwear. Her Scottish tweed jackets became her defining signature look.

For this collection, the designs used dark and subtle tartans, traditional plaids in beautiful heathery colours, interestingly textured tweeds with sparkly threads running through them, silver lace collars, white jabots, and even pheasant feathers for rich decoration, and everything coupled with Argyle print tights and big brooches - imagine modern womens-wear designs using the tradition menswear of Tudor times as inspiration - oh, Dame Viv would be proud of these !!





There was a whole selection of heavy-weight Winter-white dresses with an Empire-line shape with slashed sleeves and heavy good embellishments running down the seams - amazing stuff !!



Not everyone will relate to this collection of course, but there will be many people who will love the sheer historical romance of it all - and the regular customers of Chanel will take individual pieces and make them their own, as they always do.

Christopher Kane has given up his position at Versace, designing for their diffusion line 'Versus' and the reason given was for him to concentrate on developing his own brand - so this is the first time he has presented a Pre-Fall Collection, using many spare ideas that spilled over from his Spring 2013 show. The best for the red carpet, in my opinion, were these floral print designs in electric blue and emerald green on a black shadow-stripe background, with sheer panels and the occasional over-sized zip...




Donna Karan carried on with the deceptively simple shapes theme from her Spring 2013 Collection, and produced a Pre-Fall Collection centred round black, grey and white, with interjections of dark subtle shades of terracotta brown for evening wear. For some unfathomable reason, the models wearing the suits remind me of Anna, the Alien leader in the Sci-Fi drama 'V' - these designs are exactly the sort of thing she would wear, I feel...






Peter Dundas was inspired by Mia Farrow back in the 60s, when she was a big star with a trendy waif-like appeal, and his collection for Pucci reflected that 60s style perfectly, with black and white graphic prints and short little mini-shift dresses with big sheer sleeves, and beading in narrow and broad bands round the body...

I was also massively taken with his enormous, and heavily gilded Rococo mirror, in front of which he presented his models - simply marvellous !!





He also designed a great little selection of full-length dresses with the same 60s look - I loved the sheer printed kaftan and the elegant cream satin wrap-over dress at the end !!



It appears that Karl Lagerfeld wasn't the only designer to be inspired by the Scottish Highlands this season - the Gucci collection featured quite a few red and black plaid outfits, including one evening dress below. The rest of the collection was mainly elegant and very ladylike designs with wide open necklines (flattering for everyone), tiny nipped in waists with neat belts, and long gloves. I liked the leather suits, in autumnal shades of olivey-green and heathery-pink - more highland influence possibly...   







Jason Wu has clearly been trying to shake off his ultra-ladylike reputation this time around, as he went all out for a glamorous and  dangerously sexy look, echoing the late 70s/early 80s era. Using sleek and shiny black eel-skin for his shorter designs, and gold and black bugle beading in zig-zag stripes, coupled with sheer fabrics embellished with sequins for his longer evening-wear designs, he produced an amazing and fabulous collection, perfect for any red carpet.  





Well, that's part 1 of my look at the Pre-Fall Collections, and I will try and get Part 2 up before the weekend is out - and as you may or may not know, the first really major red carpet event is just round the corner - the Golden Globe Awards for 2013 are being held on Sunday evening, so watch out for that...

There will be a new event and date list in the side-bar being put up today, so that will be your guide to what's happening and when, should you want to go and watch the events as they happen.

Also, I have to say a big Hello to everyone who has come here to have a look from the recent Friendzy posts that have been up on my other journal, and a few others too - you are very welcome to come and have your say...

Fri, 11th Jan 2013 (UTC)
That blue grey dress is FANTASTIC!! And Chanel is just... wow. Super costume-y. Gorgeous!

My fave color is peacock blue so those Gucci shots just thrilled me!!!

Sadly I will never ever wear any of these. Or even see them IRL. *le sigh* sooo pretttyyyyy...
Fri, 11th Jan 2013 (UTC)
Well, that is true for most of us, of course, which is why I write these posts, for the most part - the Chanel collection in particular, is amazing !! Peacock blue lies within one of my favourite sets of colours too, with many shades either side - and I was attracted to their collection because of the background colour, so their reason for choosing it obviously worked !!
Fri, 11th Jan 2013 (UTC)
I just love the Chanel collection!

I think my favorite item has to be Donna Karen's grey geometric dress with the blocky print (the 4th down, left) - it's very wearable for a dress that's also so structural.
Fri, 11th Jan 2013 (UTC)
Oh yes - me too !!
The Donna Karan Collection is somewhat similar to what she did last time, but that's OK - designers often follow up on ideas from one collection top the next !!
Fri, 11th Jan 2013 (UTC)
Love those Chanel designs. How I'd love to see someone wearing one of them on a red carpet somewhere.
Fri, 11th Jan 2013 (UTC)
I would too, but I don't think we will - they're too costumey for that, although stranger things have happened !!
Fri, 11th Jan 2013 (UTC)
These are stunning they make me want to wear clothes that aren't just work gear. Tempt me to go back to making my own too especially the Badgley Mischka which look mostly like designs a woman with curves can wear and feel good. (I have extra curves but they're shrinking so I'm feeling better about myself, though they'll never get like these models, ever)

I liked the Chanel, loved the fabrics and some of the styles.

I think my favourites are the grey geometric Donna Karan dress which is really pretty and the 5th Badgley Mischka which I'd love to wear.
Fri, 11th Jan 2013 (UTC)
I am so glad I found you through the friendzies this was such a wonderful post to read

Edited at 2013-01-11 05:09 pm (UTC)
Fri, 11th Jan 2013 (UTC)
Why, thank you Roobarb (love your icon btw...)

Quite a few male designers design for curvy women, - it's not all for stick-like models these days, and it's getting better gradually !! Zac Posen is another one - he's coming up in Part 2, so you'll see what I mean...
Fri, 11th Jan 2013 (UTC)
That's good, I've never fitted the norm, especially now I am much more curvy than I should be
Fri, 11th Jan 2013 (UTC)
Very nice! It's interesting to see the continuity within each designer's offerings. I like nearly all of them. I'd say that Chanel's is very dramatic, like something one might see in a certain type of movie, perhaps. I liked the others more. Thanks for sharing.
Fri, 11th Jan 2013 (UTC)
The Chanel Collection has been presented in a very dramatic and costumey way, but if you break each outfit down into its component parts, you'll see that every piece is wearable in its own way - that's what I meant by the comment about Chanel's regular customers...
Fri, 11th Jan 2013 (UTC)
I love the Chanel collection! So gorgeously romantic.
Fri, 11th Jan 2013 (UTC)
Absolutely - romantic and extravagantly luxurious - the like of which we'll never be able to afford in our lifetime - I'll wait with baited breath for these to appear in the vintage shops in about thirty years time...
Fri, 11th Jan 2013 (UTC)
Those are wonderful dresses. I want the first one!
Sat, 12th Jan 2013 (UTC)
The first one's fabulous !! I loved it too...
Sat, 12th Jan 2013 (UTC)
I bet we'll see almost all of those Badgley Mischka dresses. They seem very red carpet friendly. My favorite one is the Carolina Herrera one you feature at the top. What an amazing print.

I think I could see someone like Helena Bonham Carter wearing that all-black Chanel (4th down on the left)
Sat, 12th Jan 2013 (UTC)
Oh yes - Helena is possibly one of the few people who would look great in these - she's eccentric enough to wear them as they're presented here too !!

Badgley Mischka is a popular label with the red carpet set, so we'll wait and see...