b-guided > Barcelona

African Beat

Spring 2012

By Jaume Vidiella 01.06.12

Winter, summer, resort, pre-fall: fashion’s cycle is increasingly frenetic it is however always curious how the ideas being worked on from one year to the next are formulated, how the inspiration evolves and is modulated. A designer might initiate something one season only for another to take it up later, but it’s done so well that  it looks like that designer started it off.  We have put together some of the best collections for this spring inspired by all things tribal and in particular geometric and figurative prints.

Photography: Basil Faucher
Styling: Javier Ly
Hair and Make-up: Isabel Ximenis para Salón de Belleza 5º 1ª
Models: Blanca I (VIEW Management), Mark T (VIEW Managament)
Hair and Make-up assistant: Eva Huertas
Acknowledgements: NU Showroom

  • DRIES VAN NOTEN. Two years ago unveiled his ethnic collection with its ‘ikat’ print which this year has invaded the catwalks. This year it’s a more complex collection with references to a hyper Spanish Balenciaga to the beauty of the botanical illustrations of the 19th Century, somewhere in-between night time landscape images from English photographer James Reeve. Available at Jean Pierre Bua.

  • ADAM KIMMEL. This American designer resembles Stella McCartney in that fans of his clothes can be highly fashionable without being completely taken over by it. This year the collection is a meeting of the surfer look combined with dense jungle aesthetic. Kimmel calls it ‘dark surf’. Substituting the sweet colours of ther 50s palette with intense greens and greys almost black. Available at Jean Pierre Bua.

  • BOTTEGA VENETA. Subtlety in manufacture, colour, texture and cut together with an attention to style which although sober is intense from Tomas Maier who has made the Italian label of the most sought after and unique. This season the inspiration comes from North Africa, the exquisite decorative geometry  and dessert colours. Available in Santa Eulalia.

  • PROENZA SCHOULER. Having two designers at the head of a label can maintain an impressive momentum. The Proenza Schouler designers can move between fashion extremes with enviable agility. Preppy, ‘grunge’, Californian girl …for good girls who behave ebadly. This year the look is safari, Mogambo style (the 50s Hollywood film starring Ava Gardner). Available at Santa Eulalia.

  • STELLA McCARTNEY. Stella McCartney’s success is difficult to explain, her collections are not really based on a personal aesthetic which evolves over the successive seasons. Women love wearing her clothes, they have just enough fashion sensibility adapting to trends without loosing their identity. This year graphic games in prints and relief. Available at Santa Eulalia.

  • MARTIN LAMOTHE. The collections are always based on a deep personal reflection communicated via the highly elaborated and detailed clothing. One of the keys to his work has always been the prints, this time around African articulated in coordinated shapes and sizes combined in a unisex collection which is both clever and unconventional. www.martinlamothe.es