Tights, Hell Yes.

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No21 AW16

Tights are present in women’s wardrobse on the daily basis – but I distinctly sense that for a few seasons they were absent on the runways, or,  at least, were ignored as a potential spotlight-stealer. They were just, somewhere there, hidden under layered skirts and thick teddy bear culottes. But autumn, a season which is ahead of us, is filled with tights, not in a matter of simple necessity – but rather as an accessory which holds the whole outfit together, oozing with flirty elegance and feminine attitude. Prada and Chanel were the first to send “cool” tights down the runway – the former will soon hit the stores with woolen, harlequin rhombus’, while the latter took tips from Carine Roitfeld (the most conscious wearer of tights, knowing they are her chic, chic, chic signature), revaming the traditional mesh into sensual lace. Later on, big and small names took a spin on the “new” trend. From messy look at Alexander Wang, to romantic grunge at No21, you are about choose from #STRICT tagged tights or even much more non-chalant, rhinestone- embroidered stockings. Hosiery is a major thing in Molly Goddard’s autumn-winter 2016 collection, where the young British designer wrapped her models’ legs in unconventional organza for her look-book.

But for these designers, we would still keep tights in a box of  “basics” this season. But tights were, and are, the essentials. So, why should we underrate them?

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Alexander Wang AW16

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No21 tights, from the designer’s Instagram (@dellacqua).

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Prada AW16

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Prada AW16 in Summer issue of Dazed & Confused

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Molly Goddard AW16

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Prada campaign by Steven Meisel, circa 2000

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Meadham Kirchhoff and granny’s crotchet fantasy

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Chanel pre-fall 2016

Sultry Punk. Alexander Wang AW16

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Sultry, defiant punk girls walked down the aisles of St. Barts Church in the heart of New York – it’s visible from the first sight that Alexander Wang pushed hard to provoke. But did he achieve his aim? Not really, even though the view of the Byzantine cupola was breath-taking. But lets not lie – in the Instagram age, it’s hard to shock with both, the clothes, and the venue. And if talking of the clothes, it’s visible that Wang again feels his NYC freedom he had before his three-year Balenciaga tenure – the looks ooze with “I don’t give a f***” attitude from every angle. Mohair cardigans and leg-giving mini-skirts smell with teen spirit, but not with Kurt Cobain – it’s more about dressing up as a “punk” girl of Sky Ferreira origins and putting on your Supreme beanie (I nearly thought the designer collaborated with Supreme on these “Strict”, “Tender” and “Girls” slogans). But what really described the Wang-gang girl were the cannabis-motif embroideries on patent white dresses. This felt both kinda youthful and Tumblr. However, I doubt a lot of 17’s and 18’s can afford this “high fashion” stuff.

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Final Breath. Balenciaga SS16

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The 3 year tenure at Balenciaga was not only exhausting for the fashion industry, but also for the former creative director of the brand, Alexander Wang. When Nicolas Ghesquiere left, I felt so bad about that fact – his sudden departure was caused by his “uncommercial” vision of the brand. Noting, that Nicolas made Balenciaga relevant for 15 years, and kept it on the best-seller list throughout the time. So, when the brand appointed Alexander Wang, the New York-based designer, it seemed to be a desperate decision, without any sense. Wang, who designs his own, street-inspired label full of apparel, heavy boots and sweatshirts, seemed to be the most unobvious choice. And, he failed to increase Balenciaga’s incomes.

But thankfully, this tedious period at Balenciaga ended this week – Alex is happy he can settle back in New York (he even mentioned in one of the interviews that he is “kind of happy” about having less responsibilities linked with designing four additional collections in Paris). His last collection didn’t have anything to do with Cristobal Balenciaga’s legacy – however, it was a sassy copy of Ghesquiere’s spring-summer 2006 collection for the brand. I was shocked. The same lace, the same sheer textiles – even the dress silhouettes were based on the idea of a nightgown, just like back in 2006. I mean, why couldn’t Alexander do some final, neoprene stuff he loves so much back at his hometown? Believe me, I really felt a relieve when the show ended – this bad joke won’t repeat anymore.

By the way, you surely know who is the newly appointed designer of Balenciaga. When I discovered that, my heart skipped a beat. Yes. It’s Demna Gvasalia. One of the designers behind the uber-cool Vetements. One thing’s sure – expect the unexpected next season.

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Did it On Em. Alexander Wang SS16

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You could suspect, that after leaving the French house of Balenciaga, Alexander Wang might have changed his style. Well folks, Wang is the same Wang from 2012 – the year before he arrived at Balenciaga. Same grunge affairs. The “girl from Bronx” attitude. Hoodies thrown over leather skirts, track-suits with studded heels (see this nightmare above), slouchy pajama shirts. This highly S&M black suede dress with Harley Davidson-driver inspired fringes is too much for me. Whateva dey say, Nicki Minaj approves these maxi slip dresses – even though she has never intended to be a fashion icon (but it was her who stole the spotlight in the front row).  This collection was purely about the designer’s signature aesthetic and feels like a grand recap of Wang’s all-time best-sellers. Maybe because of the fact that it is the 10th anniversary of the brand? Well. I admit I prefer this Alexander Wang rather than the one that tried to be sleek and neat in Paris. However, I need to confess once again, that I am not a slave to Alexander Wang’s fashion.

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Neo – Gothic

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Blame Alexander Wang and Marc Jacobs for introducing one of the most significant trends of autumn-winter 2015 season (remembering, that there as many trends as the number of designers presenting their collections during New York Fashion Week – A LOT.) Goth. Or rather, neo-goth. Wang opened the fashion week, sending his models down the runway wearing chained jackets and skirts,  maxi gowns and the must-have platform boots. The hair was all about a messy, black mullet while the whole atmosphere felt disturbing. The mood-board of the designer had a lot to do with punk and metallica, and surely Goths that we can see on the streets. However, fashion history is scattered with all-black collections – so what is so special about this collection? It translates more than the black colour. It conveys a refreshing, rebellious attitude. But not the Perry Ellis one, though. It didn’t raise that much of scandal and is definitely much more commercial.

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Marc Jacobs also presented his dark side, but in a totally different way. Rather than listening to metallica all day, his woman preferred opera and drama. Marc’s gloomy AW15 was all about Diana Vreeland’s glamour, The Night Porter sex-appeal and every Goths wardrobe essential, a leather choker. Personally, I hate seeing 14-year-old teens wearing those because they all look the same then  – but seeing chokers during Marc Jacobs’ show was absolutely fascinating. And somewhat, chic. Besides chokers, Marc made pleated skirts and brocade jackets have a major style moment.

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The trend for Goths went overseas and landed in London, where Giles Deacon of Giles presented his highly theatrical collection. The season’s hottest face, Molly Bair, wore a long dress and had a black lipstick on. Tim Burton’s model reflection, Esmeralda Seay-Reynolds, killed it while wearing a latex, Victorian-mannered waist jacket. The voluminous ballroom skirts have swept the audience away. Not only Giles presented his best collection to date, but he showed, that gothic fashion can be shady and really all about splendour.

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Alessandro Dell’Acqua reinterpreted the topic of goths in his own, Italian way. Of all mentioned collections, No21 felt the most wearable and minimal – however, the devil is in the details. It was visible, that Dell’Acqua has been thrilled with Alida Valli in Visconti’s Senso. Long lace gloves and over-sized ruffles there-and-there had more to do with the Victorian era than stereotypical Goths, however the collection looked forward in a street-style-wise way. The beautifully embroidered skirts were styled with black, neoprene hoodies, forming new, gender-fusing silhouettes.

The main aim of this post was to show you, that 2015-goths are not only about black, black and black. Well, of course you won’t really see a gothic person wearing bold pink dress, but – the neo-gothic style blurs elegance with extravagance, while it can also be more wearable and boyish. It can start on Victorian references and stop on a more modern-day punk mood. And the season of AW15 definitely proves, that being a stylish neo-goth is totally fine.

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50 Shades of Black. Alexander Wang AW15

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 “Our customer wants black, so why not do an all-black collection?” Oh dear. It’s the most commercialised sentence I ever heard from anyone in the industry since I started writing. Alexander Wang, really? REALLY? Does this mean, that the label totally went for the masses and decided to be ruled by the customer? Creativity means, that you give an idea to people – this means, that your idea is accepted or not by the person buying, analysing or observing your work. But saying that if they want black, then lets give them black makes me want to puke. Well, the Alexander Wang X HM capsule was already a bad sign (lets not deceive ourselves – the logomania prints and all that polyester & neoprene stuff was dumb). But after this totally black collection (except few pairs of jeans and one white sweater) I lose any respect for Wang. Aside from those Frankenstein boots, everything is so retail-friendly. Every rich teen girl would die to look like Kendall Jenner in one of these black dresses… and, she is going to get it, ’cause Wang knows that the “customer’s always right”.

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