It's official: Karl Lagerfeld, an avowed bibliophile, has joined the Information Age. Data centers, in all of their wired wizardry, were the theme for his Chanel show this morning, with laser prints, security-clearance necklaces, hacker caps, and two friendly robots who opened the show. When you think about it, Lagerfeld's intricate tweeds for the house already resemble circuit boards. All of which begs the question: What would Karl search for?
Few places are as synonymous with knitwear as Scotland. One of those places is Shetland, an island chain to the north of, well, Scotland that is, well, a Scottish territory. One of Shetland's islands gives its name to Fair Isle sweaters, so clearly the woolen craft is a big deal there.
Vivienne Westwood can be counted on for a bit of witty, wicked historicism. Her spring collection — now designed with her partner Andreas Kronthaler — was no exception. The central theme was, specifically, the crumbling of European societies and the dystopian mess the continent finds itself in.
When Rei Kawakubo deigns to send out polka dots or accordion pleats or tartans or hoodies, she does it with such tacit gusto that they become the most exquisite polka dots or accordion pleats or tartans or hoodies ever transferred from mind to matter, unlikely to be equaled anytime soon.
There’s always something a little hard to swallow in the whole art vs fashion debate. Fashion is an unashamed business (more and more as it goes faster and faster — until the wheels fall off) and art is always quick to veil its market associations in cerebral discourse. It comes across as trite in most circumstances when the two meet, but not in the assured hands of Yohji Yamamoto, who unabashedly walks his own path, slowly putting the art back into fashion.
At Loewe, Jonathan Anderson navigated a sea theme, albeit it highly abstracted and over-crafted. Against a video backdrop of men retrieving blue barrels bobbing on waves, he sent out a sandy palette, billowing sail-like shapes, long pirate sleeves, plundered gold jewelry, and what looked to be conch shells for necklaces.