belgrade fashion week: biljana tipsarević

(images via bfw)

while i’ve been releasing quite a few plaintive cries about being let down by this season’s edition of belgrade fashion week, i have to be quick to remind both myself and you that it wasn’t all bad–far from it, in fact. because although i’ve been sad at the absence of several designers i’ll try to refrain from naming, we did get to meet a couple of new names i should be equally pleased by, because they’ll be our friends going forward into the future. one of these was biljana tipsarević, whose a/w 2013 work took on that distinctly refined, and almost haughty touch we sometimes see in that ‘sophisticated’ subset of serbian fashion.

i don’t mean to suggest it was over-inflated or anything like that, either. just simply that the designer’s girls this season had a kind of ‘pedestal’ quality about them, as though they were standing a little bit removed from the action, the beautiful woman in the corner of the room who is being admired by everyone, yet stands alone because the rest of the guests are quietly feeling too intimated to talk to her. she looks expensive, but then, i think we know that’s what the designer was intending, as she named her range ‘the countess.’

anyway, in one of several pieces analysing the collection, wannabe magazine explained that the show was staged to the massive attack song ‘paradise circus,’ (trans.) “which brought a dose of mystery and sex appeal to the collection,” and they added that the designer appeared to want to straddle the age divide. and while i’d definitely argue there was a kind of ‘seductive career woman in her late twenties to early forties’ appeal here, one could probably go older or younger, depending upon the individual looks.

but in terms of the background and inspiration and all of that nonsense, the serbian site modni vrisak explained that (trans.) “(i)nspired by the art of Spanish painter Goya and rounded elegance of the golden era of Hollywood, Biljana’s models exude tenderness, subtlety and scaled-down elegance.” i can definitely see the rich colours of spain in the designer’s opulent palette, but i like that she didn’t take her theme too literally, which would likely have ended up in costume-territory, instead allowing it to influence her in a subtle fashion, for the details and embellishments and the like.

alors. range materials included silk, french lace, jacquards, and brocade, reported the serbian site wannabe stars, and she kept her palette fairly limited, with the flash of metallic gold balanced out by various creams and sandy shades, and with the occasional bang! of cherry red breaking through. this probably made the collection a little closed to make up, like, a whole wardrobe, but then, she did tend towards the evening anyway, even as she diversified her offerings with little cocktail dresses, suiting separates, and gowns, which was kind of refreshing, given how many designers want to linger around one or two cuts or pieces they do well.

“Extremely luxurious materials, good finishing and excellent fitting contributed to the seriousness of the collection,” (trans.) enthused the notoriously hard-to-please bfw site, later adding that “(t)he young designer opted for classic cuts and trendy details like the sharp cutting out of the waist and hips and /or relationships with transparent-opaque [details]. Coated Buttons and back closure gave dresses the spirit of French style.” they were a little hesitant, as i was, that maybe she lingered too tightly in certain detail areas (i.e., the palette), but on the whole, because her execution was so fine, i’m tempted to give her a pass.

if i was looking to pick holes, i’d probably say that i was she would have concentrated a little more on day looks, because she was, like, halfway there with some of her trousers and tuxedo-type jackets (which, with just a few snips and cuts to the pattern, could have been transformed into a blazer), which reminded me a little of what balmain is forever on about–the glam! factor–when they could be diversifying their portfolio (but then, they’re rollin’ in the cashmonay, so maybe i shouldn’t talk), but she’s got time to do that, and her evening dresses were so lovely, it would probably knock out all of her customers’ bank accounts to crack into just one, so we maybe shouldn’t be worrying about the rest ’til, yannow, like, next season (see the lookbook images at wannabe magazine).

(see a short show video here)

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