Brown Thomas s/s 2012: Back to life
Following the relief one always feels once St Bridget’s Day has passed and we have moved from the depths of winter into what is traditionally recognised as the beginning of spring, I thought we’d take our first frolic into the playing fields with some of the leading international designers’ new looks which have just landed in Brown Thomas Dublin’s Designer Rooms.
Like a lot of women, I adore the light colours and freshness of spring. But I have often felt left out, as so many designers seem to go overboard with waify-ingenue looks that are just not suitable for most people or their lifestyles.
This year there is nothing to fear. The sobriety permeating the world has also affected spring fashions — a little — with the result that we have a truly pleasurable season of wearable, yet interesting style to look forward to. Flattering shape is key in most collections. Good news for anyone who believes that it is nice to show off one’s curves.
Prints are huge. Designers such as Prada, Peter Pilotto and Dries Van Noten led the charge. But others such as Celine, Mary Katrantzou and Stella McCartney have brought them to different places. This season, we have landscape beauty at Dries Van Noten, fauna at Stella McCartney, fruit and vegetables at Dolce & Gabbana, cats at Victoria Beckham, and the dottiest floral prints you can imagine at Valentino Red, and D&G.
Sports luxe was the buzz-news of the collections. Everyone was doing it, from Victoria by Victoria Beckham to Stella McCartney. Alexander Wang brought edge and utility to it, via dark colours — forest green and black — with flashes of neon, another key trend. The look features loose shapes — blouson jackets, vests, trousers, all layered up, with some hardware (buckles, straps and the like), contrast trims and drawstrings. It likes monochrome, white was a popular choice. I loved Jay Ahr’s eveningwear showcasing this trend.
It’s a laid-back, cool style, if you can pull it off — it is to be avoided if you are not the willowy sort. But you’ll see its influences around, so don’t feel you can’t wear it at all. Think judiciously, as Brown Thomas Fashion Director Shelly Corkery did. She loved the look, but was careful about how far to go into it.
For Shelly, the key buy is still the dress, a trend she thinks people are going to struggle with, because there is so much choice. Tailoring is back, too. The plain, fitted jacket, peplum-style, is a key purchase. It goes with everything — over your dress, with shorts, or with this season’s cropped, tapered trousers. Happy days are here.