To mark my 25th year in the world of fashion I decided to present a collection, which probes the depth and versatility of a restricted palette. At first glance, a restricted black palette may be viewed as limiting. The absence of color challenges this notion. For me Black contains the all colors. It is not a negation of color. It is an acceptance.
Because black encompasses all colors. Black is the most aristocratic color of all, its poetic, arrogant, lazy as well as modest. Whether you’re pro-darkness or not, Black is slimming, mysterious, and dramatic, and wearing it marks your entrance into adulthood. In the past many design legends have included large sections of black clothing, some dedicating an entire collection to the shade as I have chosen to do this season. I truly feel that black has it all and it’s popularity goes from strength to strength as designers across the world choose to have black at the heart of their collections.
In fact, so varied and roving is the history of the color black in our species, it might actually be the most powerful color, the color that most clearly represents where our culture has been and where it is going at any given time. From our earliest preoccupations with death, darkness and survival, through our explorations of mysticism, religion, death, and the afterlife, along with our evolution to the “civilized” technological age we inhabit now, black has always been there in some form or another, rife with meaning and whispering our story through its fall and rise in popularity. It goes without saying that I am hardly the first person to be seduced by the power of black clothing; ever since mankind learned how to use the roots and plants around them to dye clothing, black has been an integral part of our collective clothed identity.
Its meaning has morphed and transmuted over the years, from traditional costumes of faith, governance, and mourning, to the nadir of high fashion and then back again. Black remained extraordinarily popular in Western dress until the 1960s, utilized frequently by the couturiers of the time, first by Dior, later by Givenchy and Balenciaga. The inventor of the now-iconic ‘little black dress’ and ‘little black jacket’, Coco Chanel was a famous lover of the colour. Often, an all-black collection means one of two things: conceptualism or consumerism. Our customer wants black, so why not do an all-black collection? The consumers also expect a certain level of downtown noir clothing from the brand and that was another reason to do a collection dedicated entirely to black. As far as conceptualism is concerned some would feel that doing a full black collection would be the easy way out, I personally think its quite the opposite.
This collection celebrates the colour black in all its guises, but more importantly serves as a tribute to the signature style of our brand. I have tried to highlight the simplicity of the colour black by using over 30 different textured black fabrics so that nothing appears flat and boring. All the fabrics are either in tone on tone-engineered jacquards or have been hand worked upon so as to create a 3 dimensional look. Even the embellishments have been done in order to stay true to the purity of theme. Pretty much all the garments are cut in signature shapes and ideas, which the brand is popular for. The textures highlight the sumptuousness of the fabrics presenting a collection that pursues the inherent strengths of the brand and proves that the works are true to my core design aesthetics. The all-black classic eveningwear marries menswear details on womenswear staples. Classic tuxedos alongside embellished dinner jackets and Draped kurtas with knee length asymmetrically cut short trousers give the layered menswear creations a wearable spin. The ladies will be delighted to find black jumpsuits to which I have added saree like pallas which can be worn on almost any occasion. Reinvented tuxedo dresses with the double-breasted coatdress being a personal favorite. The womens pant suits again done as inspired dinner jackets for women with the trouser waist superimposed at the hips and the bottom almost as flared as a trouser from the 50s. Also featured are several evening capes and coats, which emphasizes my core concept simplicity over super fluidity.