australia fashion week: camilla

(images via vogue)

while undoubtedly not among the deepest or most intellectual that australian fashion has to offer, i nevertheless both always appreciate and always look forward to (at least thus far) another camilla show, thanks to the just utterly lovely caftans designer camilla franks showcases each season (see s/s 2011 & s/s 2013), ever full of verve and colour, and reminding me a bit of the brazilian label cavalera‘s appreciation for introducing ethnic and cultural themes without ever really taking things too deep.

thus, although i pretty much want to say this every season i encounter her work, i’m tempted to call ms. franks’ s/s 2014 collection, presented at the sydney carriage works as part of australian fashion week, my favourite show we’ve seen yet.  anyway, annoyingly, there’s that other australian house called ‘camilla and marc’ showcasing at the event this season, making researching a little bit of a pain, but there were some good articles providing some decent background, so we can all relax here.

anyway, when queried about her inspiration for the upcoming spring in a pre-show interview with marie claire, the designer explained that “(t)he ‘Pachamama’ collection was initially born from my journey to South America and Peru. As the collection developed, I was inspired by cultures around the world that have a spiritual connection to the greatest artist of all, Mother Nature. As I connected with Mother Nature, or as the Inca’s call her, ‘Pachamama’, the collection was formed.”

they also asked about range materials, to which she responded that “(t)he collection features natural textures such as silk, leather and soft cottons, all with embellishments and detailed embroidery. The exclusive digital prints this season are a bright and colourful celebration, inspired by my personal travels reconnecting with nature around the world. A large part of the collection was inspired by my time spent in Peru, trekking South America and learning from the traditional weavers along the way.”

and elsewhere, as the australian beauty site bella sugar detailed how to get some of the show’s more complex looks, its eternally-thrilled sister site, fab sugar, trilled along that ms. franks “set the scene for her exotic Spring/Summer ’13-’14 collection preview in suitably nomadic fashion — pitching a cluster of glamorously styled teepees in the middle of Centennial Park. The setting was ornate enough to put Margherita Missoni’s gypset wedding reception to shame, complete with a fire pit, fruit offering, cacti garden and groups of small kaftan-clad children. And the clothes were just as fantastical.”

“Camilla’s signature prints — lurid and joyous — were back and bolder than ever with rainbow reincarnations of traditional Incan patterns,” they prattled along. “Paisley, Chinoiserie and Aztec, leopard, tiger and jungle florals were all a part of her ‘Pachamama’ inspired collection, giving the languid lineup of flared pyjama pants, tunics, maxi dresses, leggings and smock dresses an almost psychedelic sense of fun. Georgia May Jagger was flown out exclusively by the designer, and standing barefoot on the woven raffia runway she really did look like the ultimate Earth Mother. ”

then, finally, diving in to offer us some background depth, was the australian site the vine, writing that “(a)n eclectic international nomad with a tattoo or trinket from every tribe isn’t exactly the sort of character to which one would attribute consistency, but regularity is one of Camilla’s greatest virtues. This collection, titled Pachamama after the Incan goddess, as always, was based around kaftans, billowing, butterfly grandness and an overabundance of accessories….The collection was at its best when prints were kept minute and elaborate, and fabrics were light and wafty. Camilla’s larger prints lack the dizzying impact of her more detailed work. In addition to all of the kaftans and floor-skimming harem pants, there was also a sense of progression.”

“A yellow, circle skirted sundress with tassels sewn into its hem was particularly pretty, while a printed, floor-length strapless gown, with a sequined bodice, could have divorced from Camilla’s context and worn with impunity,” they concluded. “It’s easy to cut down elaborate rainbow prints that owe equally to the Andes and William Morris, to dismiss long, flowing creations so bright and sublimely confused  they’re from everywhere and nowhere at once. It is easy, but to do so is to rescind one’s belief in the outlandish. It is to decide we must all be ascetic snobs in heartless black. Camilla’s excesses may not be to your personal taste, but everyone should be thankful she’s around.” *yeow. yes, ma’am.

(watch the fashion show video here)

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