Dries van Noten is a man who knows his way around a print. He is also pretty talented when it comes to his color combinations and judicious use of embellishments. This season he wanted to combine all of those skills, which he has honed over the past 29 years in the fashion business, and take them right to the razor’s edge of what is taboo.
“For me taboo has a lot of references but they are things that you normally can’t do. It’s just on the verge of too much,” said the designer after the show.
In Van Noten’s world the brink was most clearly felt in his choice to go with colors that clashed. Instead of mixing prints with patterns in a myriad of hues, he stuck to two distinct and equally vibrant shades on most of his pieces. Each glossy color battling for sartorial supremacy on ever single one of the 62 looks he sent down the catwalk.
The cacophony of colors, which saw hot pink butt up against navy, yellow war with purple, and blue confront gold, was dramatically vivacious all on its on. But Van Noten didn’t stop there. He added strong sequined organic patterns and graphic geometric prints into the mix for an effect that was as flashy as it was fun.
Catherine Baba is going to have a field day with this collection.
Particularly as the designer also peppered this collection of full-cut trousers, easy swing coats and roomy elongated jackets with references to fashion’s illustrious past. The forties hairdo, the fifties-style bra tops, the eighties tulle skirts all came together in a feisty display of fashion bravado from the typically modest designer.
"Eccentric can be a sad old lady with twenty-five cats. A flamboyant lady is the lady who lives. She wears and she dares and she has fun," said Van Noten. In these clothes, yes, she certainly does.