Victoria Beckham – and her design team – seem to enjoy a newly found freedom in their creative process. The brand’s aesthetic can’t be as easily categorized as in the past: Beckham’s fashion is no longer about minimalism, that’s for sure. Rather, it’s about contemporary femininity that needs no labels. As she puts it: “There really is a strong reality in the garments. Everything looks really quite simple, but it’s all about the consideration, the execution, and the subtle details.” Somewhere along the line, her collections have assumed a non-uptight flow that strikes a good balance between usefulness and sophistication. Her confident assemblages of tailoring and mostly ankle-grazing fluid dresses have been garnering critical approval since she started showing in Paris a couple of seasons back. Still, it always takes a little while for a look to sink in, and then it’s another thing to follow up with tangible product that follows through on a good runway impression. Her spring pre-collection makes it clear that she’s got that covered as well. Asymmetry plays another role in her dressmaking. It’s not always easy to understand dresses that fly off madly in all sorts of directions, but here Beckham is using the possibilities of bias cutting, ruching, and collaging to great effect. Some of her eveningwear has the air of 1930s dance dresses, minus the vintage-y feel. There are day dresses that are somehow patchworked from pattern pieces that run in diagonals and seem to spiral around the body. You notice the dynamic lines because of the white piping edging each component. All that plays into hanger appeal, provoking the kind of curiosity liable to make a woman want to try something on rather than pass (as we do so often) because it looks too difficult. “I think it’s just about finding a point of difference,” Beckham observed. That doesn’t sound like much, but in a world overloaded with competing product from high street to haute level, such considerations count for a lot.
Collage by Edward Kanarecki.
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