Between London, Paris, and Milan, there was a whirlwind of denim to keep up with, but we’re making it easy for you by sharing our top 10 favorite denim collections. From Balenciaga’s broken front row bench (Anna Wintour had to stand!) , Gareth Pugh’s models in caged dresses, and Alexander McQueen’s use of lace head pieces,Spring 2012 European Fashion Weeks took more risks, exuded romance and signaled a return to the art behind couture that industry faves like Prabal Gurung craves so much. Designers are taking chances and we like what we’re seeing (well not all of it but that’s the point of this post isn’t it?).
In London, we love Henry Holland’s cloud-like look of bleach splatters on the high-waisted skinny jeans (also shown in another color scheme of peaches and cream). The color palette is pastel but with an edge, as the colors aren’t dulled down but rather pop out. The lavender high-waisted skinny jeans come with an almost animal-like printed spot on them, which have a much more nighttime feel than the bleached jeans.
Marques’Almeida certainly stood out during LFW, if that was even possible. Their take on frayed and ripped jeans and repurposed denim—in this case jeans that look like a DIY project gone out of control—is both visually interesting and creative. The creations exude a tribal nature while exerting a sense of raw rebellion. We hesitate to think the collection is actually wearable, but we give kudos for this entry into the substantial use of denim in a collection.
Paris Fashion Week definitely had a denim fest worth crushing over. Balmain took coated denim to a new level of class by pairing it with light-wash denim for a pantsuit as well as a futuristic denim mini dress that we absolutely fell in love with! We mean after all, if the world is ending in 2012, this is what we want to be wearing!
Isabel Marant was all over the place (in a good way) at PFW with patchwork denim, more bleached denim, and even a scribble print pair of skinny jeans. When you want the comfort of denim but want to take a chance that a pair of blue jeans just can’t give you, look here.
Keeping the ethnic and tribal print trend going strong, Paul & Joe brought a luxe version of the American South West to Paris mixing sheer lurex knits and metallic leather jeans in gold and bronze with bright silk ikat separates. This collection also marks the revival of hippie-chic embroidered jeans and handbags. Get into it because this is definitely the new take on bohemian style!
A decidedly architectural collection with exaggerated shoulders and bold proportions, Balenciaga‘s jeans for women were marked by frontal pleats and a cinched-waist; a method to exaggerate a woman’s slim waistline. A nod to the classic denim jacket, a satiny, over-sized re-interpretation in color blocks is embedded into the collection.
While Milan Fashion Week seemed to be marked by opulence, retro silhouettes and a return to couture, denim collections seemed to be conceived from another planet (save D&G‘s colorful handkerchief prints pieced with denim). The Dsquared2 collection for next season looks playfully urban chic. We love the pompom finish on the denim shorts, as well as the dip-dye boot cut jeans—looking dirty never looked so good!
Leave it to D&G to make foulard look so sexy! The whole collection centers on the print used as everything from killer shoes to blouses with denim details like pockets and full-on sleeves, to gorgeous summer evening dresses. This is the great au revoir to D&G as it will be combined with the Dolce & Gabbana brand after this season.
Also at MFW, the Bottega Veneta Men’s Collection combined leather and denim for a completely hot look, although we do have to say that we’d like to see those pieces as separates. We like the denim on denim style here also, which we think really only works thanks to the dark wash and minimalist detailing. The real eye-catcher was the tye-dye denim pants that almost look spray painted on. We love it on the runway but aren’t sure how well these would work in the real world.
In contrast to Roberto Cavalli‘s golden flapper dresses and couture detailing, his more casual Just Cavalli collection presented leather and metallic jeans styled in a Euro-Boho ensemble. There was some heavy-handed embroidery and pocket detailing, but the denim peasant blouse was one of the few separates we felt was worth a second look. The entire collection boldly displays some of the season’s hottest trends: python patterns and metallic jeans.
Images via Style.com.
While the Spring 2012 Fashion Weeks had some great looks, we hope designers such as Alber Elbaz, Hussein Chalayan, Stella McCartney and even Rick Owens will lend back their talents and generate new buzz for women’s denim. The relaunch of Kenzo in Paris, by the newly-appointed Creative Directors, Humberto Leon and Carol Lim (Co-Founders of Opening Ceremony) who garnered rave reviews for their colorful fishnet print collection, showed creations which could easily be reinterpreted into denim. We know designers are inspired by denim, so we hope we get to see the actual textile play a more dominant role next season.
—Elyssa Linden, Kathy Ng Hassan & Sandoval Gomez
Tags: Bottega Veneta, coated denim, D&G, Denim Menswear, denim shorts, dip dye denim, Dsquared, foulard prints, Henry Holland, high-waisted jeans, ikat prints, Isabel Marant, Just Cavalli, London Fashion Week, metallic jeans, Milan Fashion Week, patchwork denim, Roberto Cavalli, silk ikat separates, skinny jeans
What’s black and white and gray all over? That would be Dolce & Gabbana, Emporio Armani and Gucci‘s Spring-Summer 2012 menswear collection. For Milan Fashion Week, there were liberal amounts of gray separates and suiting, but brands didn’t really feature a lot of denim. As for D&G, that’s an entirely different story. We weren’t sure we loved it or hated it, but it was certainly visually appealing: denim for men was found throughout D&G SS2012 as a sort of trim: the waistbands of jeans were cut out and sewn into silk or linen shorts; silk scarf fabric was sewn into a chambray shirt and vice versa; and sometimes all three fabrics seemed to meld together in a seamless mashup of textile orgy. Check out the gallery for detailed features from D&G and DSquared2.
D&G (left) sews jeans waistbands to various fabrics for SS2012, while Moshino goes retro and Rockabilly.
Dsquared2 was among the few fashion labels to retain bright colors in their collection for the season, while a great number of brands signaled their return to neutrals and muted tones in Milan. In Paris, that was a different story! Even as patterned suiting is returning in a big way, fashion brands seem to use denim as merely a backdrop in SS2012. Prada took a page out of Lily Pulitzer’s spring sketchbook all while going golf resort-chic, while others like Burberry Prorsum, Bottega Veneta and DSquared2 channeled the seaside dock worker, complete with pea coats, woven tams and newsboy caps. In Milan, no other fashion label showcased denim like D&G this season. It’s a shame that many fashion houses still think that denim does not belong on the runway. What brand do you think should have made denim a bigger deal in their SS2012 collection?
For more menswear fashion shows, check out our coverage of Bottega Veneta SS2012 and Burberry Prorsum SS2012. All images via GQ Magazine UK. Stay tuned for our Menswear Denim Roundup Part 2 next week!
—Kathy Ng Hassan
Tags: D&G, Denim Menswear, Dolce & Gabanna, Dsquared2, Gucci, Menswear @@2012, Milan Fashion Week, Moschino
Here at denim therapy we’re suckers for a great editorial, and the Vanity Fair May 2011 Italia issue featuring Sophie Holmes is no exception to the rule. Model Sophie Holmes, gallivants around the streets of Palermo in southern Italy in denim ensembles by the likes of D&G, Replay, Blumarine and Miu Miu. Holmes oozes femininity and sets the overall ambience for the glam editorial. Shot by photographer Signe Vilstrup, the feature is a unique collaboration of chic fashion and fun, that has an overall vintage feel to it. We love the denim jacket, paired with the printed summer dress, because it combines the two elements mentioned above. Holmes undeniably makes denim look sexy.
Images via denimology.
Tags: Blumarine, D&G, denim jacket, Miu Miu, Palermo, Replay, sexy denim, Signe Vilstrup, Sophie Holmes, Southern Italy, Vanity Fair Italia May 2011, vintage denim
Timeless and classic beauty Constance Jablonski graces the pages of Spanish Harper’s Bazaar April 2011 looking ever-so gorgeous. She’s featured in a perfectly styled editorial wearing the latest in spring denim by Stella McCartney, Christian Dior, Mango and D&G. We are really loving everything from the denim apron and the boxy denim dress to the paper bag waist jeans. With it’s overall understated neutral allure and subtle sex appeal that keeps it chic, we can’t help but to wonder one thing: is denim the new black? We’ll leave that for you to ponder about! Meanwhile, be sure to infuse your spring wardrobe with a dose of spring denim.
Images via Fashion Gone Rogue.
Tags: Boxy Denim Dress, Christian Dior, Constance Jablonski, D&G, Denim Apron, Mango, Paper bag waist jeans, Spanish Harper's Bazaar April 2011, Spring Denim, Stella McCartney
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Tags: 1930s, 1940s, Acne Jeans, avant-garde, aw 2011, color denim, D&G, Dior Homme, Dsquared2, Dustbowl, Edun, Henrik Vibskov, Jil Sander, John Varvatos, Kenzo, Kris Van Assche, menswear, minimalism, Moschino, Paul Smith, Raf Simons, retro, Roaring 20s, Western
D&G lightens mid-winter mood with their lighter-than-air spring 2011 campaign, featuring a plethora of fun plaids and florals with great denim accents. The ladies frolic in tailored denim jackets paired with adorable rompers and extra wide-leg jeans. A denim apron is a questionable accent over a ruffled summer dress, but one thing’s for sure—those big pockets are great for toting cellphones and sunglasses! The boys get in on the action too with white wash men’s jeans in a cuffed casual cut, perfect for warm weather frivolity.
See the full editorial here.
—Michelle Christina Larsen
Tags: cuffed jeans, D&G, menswear denim, spring 2011 campaign, utility pockets, white wash, wide leg jeans
Via The Independent. D&G Spring/Summer 2010.
I’m not completely convinced that double denim is a good idea, even though the models look smashing on the runways. I think it takes a light touch to avoid denim overdose. As indicated in this article, different shades of denim is the key to success. The love of denim is irresistable, and all the high-end designers are doing their darndest to integrate denim into dressier ensemble looks. A party on the yacht? Yes. Cocktails at the club? Yes. Board meetings? Perhaps!
– Kathy Ng Hassan
From The Independent:
Denim isn’t just for jeans – designers have made shirts, jackets and ties out of the blue stuff. And this season, even ‘double denim’ can be cool,” says Lee Holmes
There’s a reason why denim never seems to go out of fashion.
It’s among the most versatile and practical fabrics, beloved in its time by soldiers, railway workers and, of course, since the mid-1950s, by any fashion follower worth his or her credentials.
Given fashion’s current utilitarian mood it is not entirely surprising that, both in the upper echelons of designer menswear and on the high street, denim is having an extended moment in the sun. Brands including Alexander McQueen, Margaret Howell, D&G, Topman and, of course, Gap, have made denim ubiquitous and it is no longer restricted to jeans. Denim shirts, jackets, bags, plimsolls and even decidedly natty denim bow ties are all being worn by the metropolitan male with pride. More unnervingly, perhaps, double denim – to the unitiated this describes the sporting of two denim garments at one time – has found its way out of the fashion Siberia where it has languished since the Nineties.
Click here to read more.
Tags: D&G, double denim
This is a lovely turn on a jeans shirt, even though it isn’t actually denim. D&G has produced a sweatshirt that has been fashioned to resemble a denim or chambray button down shirt. Very clever. Get yours now on sale at FORWARD!
– Kathy Ng Hassan
Tags: D&G, denim shirt
ASOS, a great online fashion store that is truly a one-stop shopping haven with designers from Cacharel by Eley Kishimoto, McQ by Alexander McQueen, Acne, Sass & Bide, Vivienne Westwood, Matthew Williamson, and the list goes on and on. They now have a kids section with cute and trendy fashions that are sure to keep you busy shopping online!
How insanely adorable are these little models? Check out what ASOS has in store for your little ones. A hip little Passover ensemble to add a little mazel tov into your day or perhaps an Easter egg hunting outfit to put a smile on grandma’s face. They will surely be styling for the up coming holidays!
Lee Kidz Linen Denim Jumpsuit, $75.02
Pumpkin Patch Dark Wash Jean, $22.27
Diesel Girls Pink Straight Leg Jeans, $65.65
Lee Kidz Lightweight Jean, $67.99
Pumpkin Patch Denim Print Dress, $26.57
D&G Junior Leopard Print Kaftan, $86.36
No Added Sugar Smiley Stripe Vest, $30.48
–Nikki Cho Russo
Tags: Acne, ASOS, Cacharel by Eley Kishimoto, D&G, Diesel, Lee Kidz, Matthew Williamson. McQ by Alexander McQueen, No added Sugar, Pumpkin Patch, Sass & Bide, Vivien Westwood