NIGHT CREA­TURES

Clare Waight Keller con­tin­ues to im­press with her sec­ond col­lec­tion for Givenchy

AugustMan (Malaysia) - - Behind The Seams - WORDS BY SYED ZULFADHLI PHO­TOS BY GIVENCHY

FASH­ION IN­SID­ERS had been watch­ing to see who would fill the shoes Ri­cardo Tisci va­cated at Givenchy, be­fore the French mai­son an­nounced Clare Waight Keller would take over the de­sign reins. She has sound cre­den­tials, hav­ing served as cre­ative di­rec­tor at Chloé and worked with Tom Ford. At the SS18 shows, ev­ery­one watched in­tently as Keller pre­sented her de­but col­lec­tion for Givenchy and gave praise. But they also asked: can she sus­tain it?

Pa y Proper

For AW18, Keller chose “Night Noir” as the theme, evok­ing the party scene of the ’70s disco era in which David Bowie, Andy Warhol, Jimi Hen­drix and Deb­bie Harry were denizens. When the fash­ion show was streamed live, Keller demon­strated be­yond a doubt that she has plenty more up her sleeve to pull out, even though it was a dif­fer­ent kind of magic card to Tisci’s street vibe. Flouncy dresses get a gothic edge. Tai­lored looks got sharper. Through­out the men’s and women’s col­lec­tions, the right amount of el­e­gance pre­vailed, keep­ing up with the DNA of Givenchy.

Hold­ing Up to Scru­tiny

It wasn’t un­til a re­gional press event in Hong Kong last month that I was able to see the col­lec­tion in closer scru­tiny. Set in an aus­tere cor­ner of the Mar­itime Mu­seum, punc­tu­ated with well-placed shrub­bery, the pieces truly shone. And sur­prised.

As a nod at the ath­leisure trend, scuba gear was ad­mit­ted into the col­lec­tion in the form of Givenchy-branded rash guards and tights, lay­ered un­der hefty tai­lored coats. The JAW shoes, in­spired by the 1975 shark film of the same name, made quite the splash with its chunky sil­hou­ette that is all the rage to­day. They look very likely to be the brand’s next best-seller. Clas­sic suits were tai­lored with per­fec­tion, as you would ex­pect from Givenchy. Among th­ese, the one the brand in­sid­ers fondly call “oily blue” stood out with its sleek sheen.

Over­all, the col­lec­tion ex­hib­ited fi­nesse, stylish­ness and an all-too-cool at­ti­tude that any pop icon would love to pull on. Clare Waight Keller isn’t Ri­cardo Tisci, nor does she try to be, but it’s clear she has cho­sen her own way to make Mon­sieur Hu­bert de Givenchy proud. AM

“WITH HER SEC­OND COL­LEC­TION FOR GIVENCHY, KELLER SHOWED BE­YOND A DOUBT THAT SHE HAS PLENTY MORE UP HER SLEEVE TO PULL OUT”

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