Spring Runway Report – Pt 2.

By Michael Kowalinski

One could hardly generalize the Spring 2010 menswear collections as being nostalgic, though elements of the past did not come quietly.These were clothes for men who appreciate classic, at times traditional, concepts of style with an eye towards the future. How best to describe them? One word constantly comes to mind: timeless.


In a season that concentrated on strength in color, both subtle and extravagant, and structure, there were spots of softness. Seen on the runway at Dior Homme, Yves Saint Laurent and Raf Simons sheer, practically transparent pieces floated on the models’ bodies. Dior kept the same rock n’ roll edge from the days of Hedi Slimane, but in a new silhouette. New, loose pants were still chic but a little more youthful. Sheer black floaty jackets, black tees and vests were shown alongside sheer black and brown suit jackets and shirts with neat collars. Similarly, though a little more opaque, long black cardigans could be seen at YSL that translated the same ease. It was strongest and clearest at Raf Simons, where that lighter than air tanks and tees with shadows of snakes, which looked like holograms floating on the body, paraded alongside structured, belted suits. The lack of solidity in these pieces, ironically, gave the shows a soild attitude, one of effortless sex appeal and modernity.


Camel and Beige

Elegance is always in style and there are few colors can be more elegant than camel, or, yes, beige. They seemed to be everywhere in Paris and New York. Phillip Lim’s collection could be camel or beige, unless otherwise noted, on long coats, printed shorts and sweaters. Maison Martin Margiela showed the classic trench coat, as did Neil Barrett who also subscribed to the light aesthetic this season. Barrett’s versions had asymmetrical closures and lapels and could be seen alongside short sleeves button down shirts worn with drop crotch camel pants. Indeed, days in the desert beckoned. Pops of light grey punctuated throughout and continued the subtle, elegant mood. Beige suit jackets and shorts were conservative, in contrast to the beige tanks with psychedelic prints. Less severe, but just as focused was John Galliano in Paris, where beige and camel military jackets, waistcoats and, yes, trench coats, were worn with the loosest fitting pants in recent history. This could be the main argument for relaxed daywear.


Relaxed Denim 

After so many seasons that pushed an impossibly slim silhouette, designers have thought about taking a break and breathing out for a moment. Denim either dominated or made a cameo in many shows and was loose, distressed, at times nearly sloppy and extremely relaxed. At Junya Watanabe and Kenzo extremely distressed jeans were rolled at the ankle, as they were at Bottega Veneta, where they were worn with a jacket and tie. Denim was as relaxed as can be, while still having a pulse, at Adam Kimmel’s cowboy influenced presentation and were part of the quintessential relaxed American look that insisted on staying this season.




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