Saturday, June 02, 2007

A dissenting opinion on AuH2O

In my (admittedly outsider) opinion, fashion, like food, is typically ingredients-intensive or composition-intensive. A loose, unstructured style may give the texture or quality of fabric a chance to shine, whereas a more complex, structured piece puts the focus on how it comes together and less on what it's made of.

That's why I don't see how people are surprised that stuff like this didn't get the approval of the fashion establishment. Most of it is relatively unstructured, with few crisp seams and lots of raw edges. It's not tailored to fit and support the curves of a female body or to accentuate the angles of a male one. And a lot of it looks less like original pieces and more like "found object" assembly.

It's not composition-intensive in that it doesn't look like a lot went into the design, beyond "hey! let's sew a t-shirt onto a skirt!" And it's not ingredient-intensive in that the fabrics themselves are "salvaged" (read: already partially worn out) and look to be unremarkable materials (t-shirts? what appears to be a synthetic slip/petticoat? ugh). Almost all of the interesting pieces, like the MetroCard dress, are utterly impractical and can't be dialed down from couture to RTW without losing what makes them good.

Sure, it's could be that they would feel shamed by the designer's environmentally conscious ethos, but isn't it also possible that this stuff just isn't that great?

UPDATE: Apparently the MetroCard dress itself isn't an original idea. That picture's from 1994, people.

I'm not too impressed with the designer's smarts, either. She can afford her own shop in the East Village but not a dress form? I don't even sew anymore, but I know that making a dress form on the cheap is not hard.

UPDATE II: The crude, didactic menstrual blood paintings displayed in an online gallery . . . not good either. These are better, if that's the right word.

I'm sure the designer is a nice and well-meaning person, but maybe design school or toiling a couple of years in the trenches would be a good choice after all?
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