It’s all becoming clear
/ Avril GroomEmailTwitterPinterestFacebookTransparency is a word on everyone’s lips at present, from politicians, who won’t give us enough of it, to fashion designers, who could be in danger canada goose outlet store uk of giving us too much. Last summer, it was the mantra for clothes but of a misty, clouded sort layers of tonal chiffon or muslin canada goose outlet uk sale that veiled the body in an alluring and decorous way. Now, in the rush to simpler, utilitarian canada goose outlet canada fashion, transparency means just that, and we are witnessing the re emergence of polyurethane and goose outlet canada plastic in high designer places.
In the past, plastic was fashion shorthand for modern, as in Canada Goose Online the 1960s with Pierre Cardin’s Space Age canada goose store belts and patent trims. Now, “clean” and “simple” are the words that every designer is using to explain their newfound love of this canada goose clearance relatively humble material very appropriate at a time when fashion, like society, is trying to cleanse itself of recent excesses and move on to a plainer reality.
Clear accessories are, says Paola de Luca of Italian trend forecasting firm TJF, “an expression of the desire for ultimate spirituality though, this being the fashion world, it’s often done in an ironic, retro contemporary way, such as Maison Martin Margiela’s surreal take on the old idea of drinking champagne from a stiletto a glass slipper [1,360 a pair] which no one would actually wear or, probably, drink out of.”
Nevertheless, she sees transparency as a continuing trend in coming seasons. Antonio Marras, who has designed a clear, coloured version of Kenzo’s classic Candy Box bag (250), agrees: “People still consider bags as fun, playful accessories. The strong trend for clear bags is a sign of optimism to me.”As far as clothes go, transparent plastic has a limited remit, only suitable for outerwear and eye catching showpieces. The see through uk canada goose outlet trench coat makes a reappearance in several collections, notably at Sonia Rykiel (1,440), whose heritage lies in the 1960s canada goose outlet sale originals and who has returned to it several times since. More directional use of it is made by Donatella Versace, whose short A line, polyurethane dresses and skirts (from 380) are printed with optical patterns inspired by her late brother Gianni’s designs, in hot colours that give an almost stained glass effect.
Striking as Canada Goose Parka these examples are, for most of us enduring summer in a plastic frock is suffering too far for fashion. Accessories are a different matter, and this is where transparency comes into its canada goose outlet own. For several years, summer style has been all about light and airiness, and what could look lighter than a pair of Perspex heels?
Rita shoe by Jean Paul Gaultier, 590.
“We wanted to create the illusion of walking on air,” says Kurt Geiger buying and creative director Rebecca Farrar Hockley of KG’s clear heeled ankle boot (250). Shoes are one area where the barely there look has really taken off. A Perspex platform or wedge gives an illusory height and elegance, and has you looking as if you’re balancing delicately on tiptoe. As Tamara Mellon, the power behind the Jimmy Choo brand, points out, “The lightness of this look is not only fresh and futuristic but also incredibly feminine.”
Fendi’s draped and pleated, blush coloured fabric sandal (920), for instance, wraps itself caressingly up a slender leg, while its clear platform allows a narrow heel of vertiginous proportions. The achingly trendy camel leather canada goose uk shop shoeboot (405 at Matches) from Cacharel’s new designer Cdric Charlier has an elegantly cut, clear wedge that really does give a tiptoe stance, while tall Perspex heels and sheer back straps on Sonia Rykiel’s classic 1940s style platforms (from 302) give a feather light jauntiness.
Emporio Armani Plexiglas bracelets, from 99.
All these reflect the wider strapped, more earthy look of this summer but, mixed with clear Perspex, achieve an appealing lightness. The star, however, is Miuccia Prada, who uses not only polyurethane but crystal “to reflect the summer light”. From a silk top hung about with chandelier drop sized crystals (6,070) cheap canada goose to totally clear polyurethane sandals, based on the studded clog look but clustered with crystals on chains (1,100) more of a fantasy than anything Cinderella dreamed of she works transparency to the max. Without the crystals (and perhaps more wearably) there are variants in all shapes, from a very modern looking sandal completely clear but for a white strap across the toe (430) to a canada goose black friday sale transparent version of the new pointy toed, 1950s influenced kitten heel (395).
Stuart Weitzman has also been particularly sharp on accessible versions of the idea, canada goose outlet new york city capitalising on the move to lower heels with clear, crystal embellished “jelly” pumps (99.50) and sandals that are both pretty and comfortable, exclusive to Russell Bromley.
Kurt Geiger’s Galaxy shoe in suede and hand painted Perspex, 260.
Clarity, however, is only half the story. It is also cunningly mixed with conventional materials to conceal and reveal. Cesare Paciotti’s delicate stiletto sandal (about 455) has clear straps decorated with oval spots that look at first glance as if they are randomly dotted on your feet “a marriage of futurism and classicism”, he says. Jean Paul Gaultier uses transparency in both styles: in bold, wide straps “as part of a futuristic, homage to Cardin look” and also as titillating inserts ( 590), revealing a glimpse of toe, “because the collection is lingerie inspired, so peep through inserts look sexy, no?”
The late Alexander McQueen’s undersea world fantasy included some of the most extraordinary shoes ever to grace a catwalk high rise creations made from a lustrous, specially developed resin with retaining straps made clear so as not to spoil the line. These hand moulded artwork shoes were made exclusively for the show, but such has been the interest from collectors that a charity auction is being discussed.
Sonia Rykiel belt, 104.
They also bring us to technology. canada goose outlet uk Shoe designers now work as closely with techno wizards as with leather craftsmen, none more Canada Goose Outlet so than Mellon and her team at Jimmy Choo, whose futuristic Zap style (1,495) with its heel and platform in part coloured, Day Glo Plexi lights up as you step down: the sophisticated clubber’s equivalent of children’s flashing trainers. These are uncompromisingly modernist, as are Emporio Armani’s coloured Perspex geometric heels (369), most striking in red teamed with black patent a theme the designer takes through to jewellery and hair accessories in a clever blend of 1980s influences and spare modernity.
Equally technical are Kurt Geiger’s Perspex heels and platforms flowing with subtle glitter or painted with bold abstract stripes (Galaxy, 260). “Lightness and the unexpected are both part of the Vivier philosophy,” he says. “For my super nature theme I was looking for something natural crystal is an important natural canada goose outlet jackets element but you cannot make a heel from it so I chose Plexiglas. Its transparency gives the allure of crystal with the glamour of ‘diamonds’ locked up in the heel.”
If new technology helps designers and consumers enthuse about transparency, clear handbags are harder to explain. Karl Lagerfeld showed them at Chanel in spring 2007 and again in autumn 2009 as a spoof; “vacuum packed” bags containing neatly displayed small items such as wallets and iPod holders. But how many of us would want the stuff we carry round with us exposed to public view, or feel constrained https://www.fanclub-fulton-smith.de to canada goose outlet shop smarten up? Fendi gets it right, with a series of exquisite, slightly art deco, evening sized Plexiglas clutch bags (price on request), which deserve only the most beautiful objects inside them.
Rykiel’s satchel like little bags come with black suede trim (495) or occasional crystal pins (531) to distract from the detritus inside, while Prada’s bags are leather or canvas trimmed (750), or have a pretty edging canada goose outlet toronto factory of crystal (1,550) they are very sheer but include an interior pochette to keep you tidy. Others sugar the pill with colour. canada goose Hogan’s sporty styles (275) are practical in red or black, Kenzo’s Candy Box bags (260) are cheerfully bright and Emporio Armani has bags with transparent handles (409) or trims to match the Giorgio Armani Plexiglas heels (995).
If, despite all the trend pointers, you feel this may not be a long lived look, accessories allow you to acknowledge rather than embrace it, and have advantages. Rykiel’s clear belts with bright plastic buckles (104) a favourite, she says, of Michelle Obama are flattering, giving shape without cutting you visually. Prada’s clear framed sunglasses (189) are big but don’t overwhelm the face as a heavier colour could. And Emporio Armani’s Bauhaus inspired, geometric jewellery (from 99) makes a bold, individual statement with summer’s simple dress shapes.