Chalayan’s Teutonic trip

Article publié le 4 mars 2016

Texte : Jessica Michault
Crédit : Swarovski

Hussein Chalayan is one of those designers, like Rei Kawakubo, whose creations are never, ever just about clothing to wear. He is a deep, emotionally driven man who, with each collection, reveals just a bit more of his fascinating and profoundly layered soul.

This is why every season he finds himself surrounded by a pack of journalists hungry to understand the meaning behind his work. The crowd was particularly ravenous this season as the overarching message felt a bit more muddled then usually.

Which is an interesting situation considering that the construction of the clothing itself was so well done and globally more wearable than usual. Chalayan opened with some great outerwear in the form of coats with tone-on-tone curving line layers, cool double waistline trousers and jackets that had a faux dimensionality to them with a pleat effect that made it seem like pockets were peeking out from behind lapels.

Next came a series of silk asymmetrical dresses that looked like they were constructed from technical schematic of some unknown urban project. They had a geeky charm. Ditto the boxy designs that appeared later in the show, covered in Swarovski crystals and resemblingretro computer dashboards.

But when a number of outfits, some featuring digital time displays formed from red crystals and others covered in German words, showed up on the catwalk, an explanation was needed.

The clarification Chalayan gave was as follows, “the whole thing was about Germans and the whole region because I think that it is a culture that we take kind of for granted. The fairytale culture, the technology, the food culture and I found that there are a lot of layers that I was interested in”.

Chalayan’s interest certainly makes it tempting to dig a bit deeper into Teutonic culture in general, if it can spark a solid collection like this one. Leave it to Germany to inspire a show filled with hardy wearable designs.

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