Saturday, September 10, 2011

NYFW Spring 2012: Duro Olowu RTW

Courtesy of @kmetro

Duro Olowu always strikes that balance between fresh and familiar - a number of his looks seemed to pull from past collections, because when you have such a distinct and believable point of view like Duro Olowu does, drawing from yourself, where you've been, and striking a balance between that and the here and now makes for a compelling re-introduction. Not surprising, then, that in presenting new and old, Duro Olowu drew inspiration, in part, from the 1940s influx of Jamaican immigrants in the UK - their personal styles updated and mixed with new realities, but not altogether lost.

Duro Olowu is a master of contrasts and variety - from his diverse 15-model set, to a black and white snowflake print side by side a silk watercolour, floral top coat seen on Georgie Badiel, or solid black meeting a colorful bed of flowers on Kinee Diouf, and the fine balance between covered up and free that defined the mood. Overall, vintage floral motifs were ubiquitous, joined by sprinklings of animal print - a black and white graphic snake print was a particular delight. Even with a solid red dress, candy stripe print, and hints of neon highlights, colour played an important but not overpowering role, with black and white acting as a neutral base.

Skirts were layered and/or long, dresses were loose and fluid in signature silks (free enough for the models to dance and glide without inhibitions, and in one case paired with pants), jacket had tails and were lined in silk, and two layered, belted asymmetric spaghetti-strap dresses tugged at our heart strings and wouldn't let go. Sleeveless or covered up, solid or a mish mash of influences happily co-existing (Duro cited the iconic images of photographer Jacques Henri Lartigue as a major inspiration), soft pussy bow batwing blouse or a bold black and white pleated skirt paired with a chic knit cardigan bordered with gold dust, every piece bore traces of Duro Olowu's DNA in spirit, manner, and sensibility.

Courtesy of @closetcollage

Courtesy of @elenabrooke24

Courtesy of @ElaineWelteroth
More photos to come. In the meantime, enjoy the selection at Now Fashion.

- SLiq

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