Sunday, 15 September 2013

Hellen Van Rees' S/S14 Presentation: Fuzzlayerglossbox

And so to London Fashion Week, where I began my adventures with the presentation from innovative Dutch designer Hellen Van Rees. I've previously covered Hellen's work here on the blog, and also for Running in Heels. It was fascinating to see how she's developed since then, especially as she's been garnering praise for her eco-friendly fashion stance (hello, Humanity in Fashion Award) and taking on the challenge of holding a TED talk on the theme of sustainability. This was her first solo presentation at Vauxhall Fashion Scout's Freemasons' Hall, giving her the chance to really shine.

The 15 looks she created for the collection had been influenced by 1920s-30s dressing, Boardwalk Empire and Coco Chanel. They showed a more mature side to the ideal Van Rees woman, with floor-length dresses and delicate chiffon pieces complemented by 2D cuboid panels, replacing the 3D cubes that were so prevalent in her earlier ranges.

Model in white chiffon dress with rectangular patent panels
 A minimalist all-white top and mid-length skirt combination in look 3.

Wedge shoes with interwoven threads
 Wedge heels finished all of the outfits and really brought the looks together.

Waist belt in patent black with cuboid pattern
 The varying dimensions of this belt created drama at the waist. They also reminded me of city skylines, with the blocks like skyscrapers.

Patent white tabard-style layer with woven sleeves and underlayer
 The models' wispy backcombed hair and red lipstick was one example of the juxtapositions in this show.

Close-up of weaving technique seen in S/S14 collection
 Here you can really get a feel for the different textures as they sat alongside each other.

Two models in patent black dresses with chiffon
 The oil slick effect here worked really well against the chiffon.

Model in white stands in front of decadent painting at the Freemasons' Hall, London
 As you can see, the setting of the Freemasons' Hall and its dark portraits added that bit more drama.

Monochromatic dresses by Hellen Van Rees
 Multiple panels made up these dresses. The bolero jacket on the right continued the cube-shaped theme.

Close-up of woven dress with colourful threads
 Just look at those threads. My instant reaction was to connect the diamond pattern to the quilted panelling of a Chanel 2.55 handbag, but also the coloured threads remind me of Bridget Riley paintings.

Model wears white panelled dress with woven details
 Pure polished glamour.

Halterneck black dress with rectangular panels
 This was one of several halterneck pieces, with frayed hems.

Model in white stands in front of London Fashion Week bloggers
 The presentation allowed press and bloggers to walk between the models, creating shots like this when us mere mortals were stood alongside the creations.

Blogger walks past model during Hellen Van Rees' S/S14 presentation
 Wandering around the room gave a great opportunity to see the designs from all angles and in different lights.

Polished make-up with bronze cheeks and red lipstick at Hellen Van Rees
 The white fraying looked like feathers.

Juxtaposing fabric textures at the Freemasons' Hall presentation
 Glossy white vs. multicoloured threads, and high necklines all round.

Close-up of eco-friendly weaving by Hellen Van Rees
 An open back balanced out the high neckline of this dress.

Jacquard patterns and frayed hems for spring
 Simple buns were the order of the day when it came to hair - nothing that would be too distracting.

Detail of undulating waves on a maxi-dress from the collection
More of those Bridget Riley-esque threads? Oh go on, then.

Fuzzlayerglossbox shows a definite growth in Hellen Van Rees' work and I'm sure it will be a hit with buyers as well; personally I'd love to see UK stockists introducing her to their customers, so we can show our support.

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