Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Olympia Le-Tan Spring 2013

At long last, the fashion community is giving Olympia Le-Tan the designer the recognition she deserves and coverage of her clothing line on sites such as Vogue and Style.com. And all it took was vintage inspiration, and what seems to be the presentation of a musical wrapped around her own unique sense of quirk. With ideas so big and bold it's no wonder she turned down a job at Chanel to explore the exciting avenues of leather loafers, plaid, sweetheart cardigans and bold pinstripes. Olympia Le-Tan principally made and sold minaudières furnished with hand embroidery, felt and brass-fittings and you see them incorporated with the ensembles, but in some cases the hairstyles make an even bigger statement. Until you reach the red stripes and yellow coats, all the colours are mild and muted in a collection more suited to pastels, reminiscent of Prada and Miu Miu from 2011 and 2012, but here the clothes just seem to cater for the female figure and celebrate curves more. It's amazing what a hip-hugging skirt, bustier topped dresses and simple blouses can do. Also the pants feature a masculine breathe of fresh air, but make no mistake, these were made to fit a woman and I love it.

The Marilyn Monroe bombshell dress in white has been dressed up with a saucy and towering beehive hairdo in a luscious new colour which I am all for. Honestly, this fresh presentation of clothing through musical and such appropriately cast models for the clothing line really does make me relish the fashion world's love of vintage dresses- particularly the glorious 1950s and 1960s secretary style. Only now I can enjoy a little less sexism in the workplace and closer steps towards equal pays for equal jobs. I don't really believe in mini-skirts made to please men or "shaking what your momma gave you", so although women's roles in the 1950s stunk at least the hemlines and tailoring were modest and respectable. It feels good to enjoy the fashion sitting on the other side of the fence in the twenty-first century with better equality rights and some great fashion relieved. Also since it's Summer where I live I can channel halter neck dresses, pretty lipstick and pinup poses like there's no tomorrow.

I was somewhat confused to see a bright yellow anorak in a collection that seemed so deeply routed in tradition, muted tones and vintage office wear, but then as all good treasures are received I realised it was fantastic and I then loved it/ I want to smother it with the whole armada of my badge collection and wear it over metal/ punk/ hardcore band t-shirts and denim cut-off shirts. That's probably not the way Ms. Le-Tan envisioned it (almost certainly not) but this is a democracy and sometimes a cheer-ocracy so being crazy and subversive can sometimes do more good than harm. I can't really find out for myself though, my mother is now at home for another 6 and a half weeks of my holidays. Goodbye a Summer of styling an outfit a day and striving to maintain my hair and teeth. Hello writing mountains of blog posts about my feelings and cramps while eating mountains of spaghetti and ice cream.

The new Le-Tan clutches also look great and I can't say I'm not surprised to see them making a guest appearance amongst all the pomp and circumstance. However, these are not the slim leather embellished malettes I was more familiar with but, well, glorified handicraft lunchboxes. I of course mean that in the nicest way possible. If there's one thing I liked better than fashion it's a good book, a hot mug of tea and an exotic sandwich. To me, exotic means adding a slice of tomato to ham and cheese of chicken with cucumber and lettuce. And as everyone knows, lunchboxes look best when accompanied by a thermos so it only seems fitting to finish off the look with something rescued from a second hand shop (preferably unused) and with Strawberry Shortcake patterns. I'll need to remember all of this when heading off to the open range zoo with my boyfriend if I can sneak food in and that cute blouses must explicitly be worn with cute patterns if beehives are too impractical.

Can someone just buy me this dress? A size twelve will do nicely... Obviously it's my favourite piece from the collection of this very moment, chosen more for the shape and structure than colour. I can easily be won over by any minimalist dress with a black top half and a pretty printed bottom half for the skirt. The pose just seems to scream teen spirit without the 1990s angst and substance abuse; more like Liesl Von Trapp taking centre stage years later at a Eurovision Song Contest. Although my mother would chastise me, I love the musical note at the centre of the bustier of the dress and points have also been earned for blessing this dress with practical pockets embedded in a hot and steamy bed of optical illusions and clashing stripes. The skirt structure is so large and full- a blossoming swing skirt ready for poodle appliques, head scarfs and cat eye sunglasses. I'm sensing well choreographed dance numbers involving girls fresh from the iron grip of traditional hair curlers and the powder room.

I know it's just the lighting playing tricks on the structure of the skirt, but for a hopeful, sugar fuelled moment I thought that the great legend Olympia Le-Tan had designed her own cheerleader skirt with alternating coloured panels and I was ready to jump put of my seat like a rocket and search for spare change around my house. That didn't happen. Instead I felt a bit sullen because the hunt for the perfect cheerleader skirt was back on and my prayers had not been answered. That was all OK though because instead I inspected the fine scalloped sleeves and collar of the blouse in a floral/ picnic pattern with the matching headscarf and the cute lunchbox shaped clutch made with French finesse which was undoubtedly made by hand by Olympia in her Paris studio. Since I've left high school last year I haven't been yet ready to return to the style of sensible shoes and white socks but the loafers paired with mid-calf socks are almost as great as pastel saddle shoes. Almost.

It was inevitable that the season's darling trend, peplums, wormed their way into this chic and eccentric collection but it seems so fitting recreated as a vintage-styled bathing suit with pink material and halter neck. When a book-sized object seems to be pressed poetically to the bosom of a model, I can't help but envision banana lounges, big sunglasses and lounging by a pool side because deep down on the inside I really am a romantic. Unfortunately on the outside I am a broke girl who can't afford nice things and has holidays coming up so my clothing budget has been somewhat strained lately. Oh barf. Economic instability across the globe and having to balance my wallet and savings is so not Kawaii.

"I'm a strong, independent witch and mistress of the night and don't need no warlock". I have been reading perhaps, too much Terry Pratchett than the normal and everyday person but it's a little exciting when I see a model lit up from below and her hair seems to be billowing with a thick magic just like Storm from X-men. Despite the skirt having an asymmetrical overlap/ wrap design to it the horizontal stripes seem to stretch uninterrupted and I have a lot of respect for whoever can create clothing with that much keen sense of detail. Christmas is right around the corner and I already know of the perfect themed blouse I want to buy from Etsy which would look devilishly handsome when worn with this, but I will also settled for lederhosen. If I can manage my funds properly, all will be revealed soon my pretties.

1 comment:

  1. I'm a man and I know loafers and socks are comfy, I can see it's also cute. So I wonder why girls stopped wearing them. Is it too fancy or different than usual? Imho that shouldn't count when one has a personal style, afterall it's also how style changes. Because this is perfectly readapatable to modern outfits, imho.