MILAN--Raf Simon's cited 1950s couture, Diane Arbus' tunic dresses, furniture designer Jacques Adnet, and Louise Dahl-Wolfe--one of my favorite fashion photographers--as inspiration for his Fall 2011 Jil Sander collection.
Those references are easy to spot, but my visceral reaction to the runway was a bit less high brow.
To me--from the robin egg blue eyeliner to the oversize, molded shirt dresses to the stirrup pants strapped into wedge booties--it was as if a series of magazine advertisements circa 1957 had come to life. There was a woman shopping in her forrest green short jacket and pink round neck blouse. There was another dressing up for cocktail hour in a rose-printed, duchesse satin frock. And a set of models skiing down the slopes in sweaters and stirrups.
It helped, of course, that the music played for most of the show was quite cinematic, giving the collection a melodramatic, emotional feel, despite its depiction of a quite conservative, guarded time.
Needless to say, I liked it. A lot. **Photos by Imaxtree.