fashion rio: 2nd floor

(images via ffw)

honestly, i can have a bit of a time summing up rio de janeiro’s fashion rio, because i don’t want to sound pejorative in any way, but on the other hand, i’m awfully tempted to describe it as a bit more commercial, younger, or perhaps (dare i say it) more trend-following than its trend-forming brazilian sister-event, são paulo fashion week. and truly, i love many of the fashion rio exhibitors, but it’s hard not to see the event as a less avanty-type production, in no small part because many of the spfw labels’ offshoot lines, such as 2nd floor, the little sister of denimwear label ellus, show here.

and yet! as you know, i’ve never been a denim kid, not particularly at all, and thus, over the past couple of seasons (see a/w 2013) we’ve been acquainting ourselves with 2nd floor, i’m finding i’m actually relating to it much more than the main line, and that was definitely once again the case whilst juxtaposing the two collections for the s/s 2014 season. this time around, 2nd floor opted for an art theme, and seriously, you can never do me wrong with one of those.

and although i was honestly thinking quite a bit of richard prince‘s nurse series (which was given some love by marc jacobs during the louis vuitton s/s 2008 show) as alicia kuczman hit the catwalk in her little white very nursey ensemble, in actuality, the largest influence was supposed to be the pop art work of roy lichtenstein, explained the brazilian site closet online, though they did go on to allow that (trans.) “the nurses uniforms of 1960s,” were also tossed into the inspirational mix. but of course!

anyway, in a rather humourous turn, the brazilian site chic gloria kalil reflected that, despite the above (trans.) “his nurse goes to the beach (smartass) with hotpants under transparent coats, in a clipped dolphin skirt with pockets slapping breasts,” before noting that, whatever ideals we might have that this was, like, fully a collection about artistry, we ought best remember that ellus is behind it and there is a commercial motive. but of course. how else could we explain all that sheer fabric? the sexy nurse, one of the strongest fetish points there is, non?

and in their turn, i was glad to read the richard prince connection was made elsewhere, with ffw describing how (trans.) “(r)eferences to sports and beachwear, 2nd Floor plays with opposites, the geometry of the cold black and white with the heat of citrus colours. There is a game with polka dots, starting and ending discretely and overlapping maxis in colourful outfits….The scenography of Roberta Marzolla makes a connection with the main theme of the collection, the pharmacy (shelves with bottles, medicine dropper, etc.). Four thousand bottles were used to compose the scene. If the number of used bottles ipresses, the number of looks only helped lower the mark to show a compact and fresh collection.”

to be sure, i’d agree, although when elle came in with basically the opposite conclusion–that it was less weighty and more fun, i’d agree just the same. and finally, there was vogue, commenting that there was (trans.) “a sarcastic and fun tone to the collection,” while arguing that there was a certain andy warhol-esque performance-y touch to the whole presentation. and i’d agree with that as well. i think there was meant to be something very meta in this whole commercial/art/which is it-type show, and that’s ultimately the point of it all. plus, yannow, some cute nurses costumes to revel in all the while. we all win here, non?

(enjoy the full fashion show video here)

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