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
When you stray from the path of generic blue jeans, most people imagine jumping right into the bottomless pit of “denim couture” (ie: opulent denim wedding gowns). But beyond your regular medium-wash, there is a happy medium of styles that can give your look a quirky edge without feeling overboard. Below are nine unconventional pairs of jeans we scouted on Yoox.com that you might consider befriending for a summer of decidedly different denim style.
1. We wish these would lose the rhinestones, but overall the idea of overlapping, faded, colorful international money printed on denim is pretty awesome. Parasuco International Currency Jeans ($118) – buy it now at Yoox.
2. Flower children may have sported intense floral embroidery all over the surface of their denim affects, but these stone-wash jeans have a feel that’s more “art nouveau” than “free love”. D&G Floral-Applique Jeans ($225) – buy it at Yoox.
3. Not entirely against the grain of the white denim trend (which we suppose would actually be black), these white-to-mango ombre skinnies will freshen up any dreary outfit. Maison Martin Margiela two-toned gradient jeans ($240) – buy it at Yoox.
4. We’re pretty sure you could throw these into your suitcase wherever you’re headed this summer, so long as there’s a party going on when you get there. Just Cavalli purple floral & leaves print skinny jeans ($150) – buy it at Yoox.
5. A matte metallic beats out any of the shiny, flashy stuff—if not only because you could actually get away with wearing these to the office. Christian Dior matte metallic skinny jeans ($285) – buy it at Yoox.
6. If you want a little rock’n’roll that could still pass as elegant, you’ve got it. Amen. light-wash jeans with chain detail ($360) – buy it at Yoox.
7. An antique-looking ombre of gorgeous summer sky colors awaits—and we love that these aren’t skinny. Galliano tie-died jeans with studs & logo detail ($215) – buy it at Yoox.
8. Tears, bleach, and lots of stitching. These jeans have been through a lot, but they’re going to kill any stage fright you might have had. ROCK STAR destroyed bleached skinny jeans ($155) – buy it at Yoox.
9. This might be the print on your grandma’s couch in Miami, but we’re pretty sure it’s going to look better on your legs. Versace Jeans Couture printed jeans ($98) – buy it at Yoox.
—Michelle Christina Larsen
Tags: amen jeans, Christian Dior, d&g jeans, floral denim, Galliano, Just Cavalli, Maison Martin Margiela, parasuco, rock star denim, versace jeans
Denim fashion has infiltrated hotels! Thompson Hotels, known for its luxury boutique hotel vibe packaged for Hipsters and creatives (as in actors!), has a blog which just featured a selection of denim shoes in various forms: heels, wedges and platforms by brands like Just Cavalli, Miu Miu and Stella McCartney. Are you curious about rocking a pair of denim heels? Check out Thompson Hotels’ denim shoe picks for your inspiration.
Just Cavalli denim and perforated leather upper ($505) – buy it at Zappos.
Enzo Angiolini Cerick in denim ($110) – buy it at Piperlime.
Christian Louboutin Deroba denim wedge ($595) – buy it at Bergdorf Goodman.
Miu Miu denim leather jute platform sandals (on sale for $468) – buy it at Bluefly.
Nine West Chartres wrapped platform in denim (on sale for $59) – buy it at Zappos.
Stella McCartney Leda Castillo blue clog (sold out, call to order) – buy it at Shop Savannah.
Alright, the Miu Miu shoes are more of a denim-inspired platform heel, but you get the point. Top designers know consumers love denim so they’re trying to deliver it to us in other covet-worthy forms.
—Kathy Ng Hassan
Tags: denim heels, denim shoes, Enzo Angiolini, Just Cavalli, Miu Miu, Nine West, Roberto Cavalli, Stella McCartney