Friday, February 25, 2005

Red And Black

You know there’s a change underfoot when some of the world’s most influential designers choose something in black to open their runway shows. In New York, Francisco Costa sent an unadorned short black strapless dress worn with black ankle strap shoes and bare legs down his Calvin Klein runway; Narciso Rodriguez selected an abbreviated black wool bolero worn over an egg shaped knee length dress (again- accessorized with bare legs and black ankle tied shoes); Marc Jacobs opted for a simply chic black belted wool coat worn over a dark gray skirt (with a longer hem) and a black and gray patterned scarf. In Milan, Alessandra Facchinetti’s Gucci looked fairly ‘Gucci’ even without Tom, thanks to its blackout mode (or was that deep dark navy? Well, regardless, it looked like black)), starting with the first passage a form-fitting belted above the knee coat with high sculpted collar; and Miuccia Prada put her first model in a plain black wool slip dress hemmed in black lace, accessorized with simple black platform pumps and a no nonsense black handbag. Even Christian Lacroix, a man known for his love for riotous color and pattern, went with a simple black knee length dress worn with black boots, to open his Emilio Pucci show in Milan. If EVER there was a label synonymous with glorious color and prints, it is Emilio Pucci. Boy, is nothing sacred these days?

It will be interesting to see how this major fashion ‘trend’ (well it’s hardly a trend) will be interpreted and translated on the Red Carpet this Sunday night, when the stars turn out for the Academy Awards in Los Angeles. For the past several seasons now, (if not several years) all the fashion pros and pundits who review and report on the Oscar fashion, have predicted that since everyone is so ‘bored’ with boring black, the major celebrities will all be wearing color. But by now it seems the tables have turned and quite frankly, it is saturated color or saccharin sweet pastels that we are all collectively bored with and seem so, well, clichéd.

Certainly, from the look of recent runways, the major designers of the world have rediscovered and rekindled their love affair with NOIR, so I suppose that to be really plugged in, well dressed and ‘of the moment’ may, by definition, signal a return to black. I for one, have always loved the way Nicole Kidman looks when she chooses arrestingly simple black as opposed to some of the major fashion mistakes she’s made when trying too hard (who could forget that awful gold Gucci ‘flapper’ number she wore last year?) Stay tuned.

- Marilyn Kirschner

New York Fashion Broadband Video Report

Our latest broadband video report is all about Marc Jacobs. Our videos are the only regularly scheduled video report covering New York fashion on the web. It is written and reported by Marilyn Kirschner. If you have the Real Player installed on your computer and have broadband access click here to start the report.

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