SAO PAULO--Ellus set the stage for a standout show with an amazing live string quartet (mixed with electronic beat) and a unique stage backdrop, which looked like a wall taken right out of your living room. And happily, the clothes did not disappoint, easily matching the set's glamour and sophistication. The face of the brand Aline Weber (who is Brazilian, duh) opened the show with an all black ensemble that was anything but boring, combining leather, sequins and wool in an artful blend of textures--certainly a promise of what was to come.
SAO PAULO--Even before arriving at her show, and certainly before the clothes came out, I could tell that Gloria Coelho is one of the city's most respected designers: It was nearly impossible getting a ticket, the crowd was far more sophisticated and chockfull of socialites than regular, and Coelho started the show a good hour and fifteen minutes late. But once the show did finally get underway, it all made sense. Coelho's strong stylistic perspective, and sophisticated design sensibility clearly mark her as one of the most experienced and developed designers in the industry here.
SAO PAULO--Despite its mostly tropical climate, Paulistas are huge fans of fur. Given, this is their winter season but, it never really gets cold here. No matter, the Brazilians like their fur and they know how to design and style it too. Case in point: FH for Fausen Haten, who styled many of their evening looks with silky fur stoles and neckwarmers. While the fur did lend a wintry edge to the collection, the looks were generally season-less, with a cool tropical leaf print dominating the first half of the show, and giving way to stunning emerald green, and brilliant purple gowns.
SAO PAULO--Samuel Cirnansck has earned a reputation for his theatrical, over the top runway shows. Last season the designer sent his models down the runway tied up and gagged, so I was pretty excited to see what he had cooked up this time. And while it wasn't nearly as risque as last season, it was still a visual treat. Cirnansck dusted the runway with fake snow, and set up a huge wrought-iron gate at the front of the runway. The effect was something like a snowy fairy-tale, starring an icy swan princess, and it was a refreshing change of pace from Sao Paulo's somewhat bare-boned runway shows. Also refreshing: Cirnansck used a handful of black models--more than any other designer we've seen yet. Kudos.
First of all, can we just talk about how the woman on the left (Alessandra Ambrosio) is five months pregnant? I know, unfair. Now we've gotten that out of the way, let's talk about the clothes: I have to admit that since all anyone could talk about in regards to Colcci was that Ashton Kutcher was definitely/probably going to be there, and that Alessandra was going to walk, I didn't have high expectations in terms of fashion. No one bothered to tell me that, in addition, to star presence, the clothes would actually be cute. But cute they were. In fact, this was one of our favorite collections so far. There were cool patchwork denim, mod minis and awesome knitwear. In short: There was lots to love.
SAO PAULO--Remember ravers? Well, Brazilian label Osklen sure does. The brand used the subculture as the main inspiration behind their fall 2012 collection. But before you start picturing oversized Jnco pants, and pacifier necklaces, note that these are not the raving clothes we remember (and wish we could forget?): This time, they are all grown up, high fashion--and eco-conscious. Sure, there was a lot of neon, camo and brightly colored furry things (from purses, to hats, to sweaters), but there was also expertly tailored outerwear, filmy blouses and a digitized floral print that was decidedly 2012. Of course, what else would you expect from designer Oskar Metsavaht, whose background is not in design or fashion--but snowboarding. Fun fact:
We're here in Brazil for Sao Paulo fashion week (and by we, I mean, Hayley), and word is that Alessandra Ambrosio and Ashton Kutcher will walk the r
For the average American, Brazilian fashion might mean flip flops and bikinis, but upon arriving in Sao Paulo it becomes clear that the industry here is so much more than that--and many designers are content on leaving behind the cliches and stereotypes, and embracing a more global aesthetic. One such label is Animale, whose fall/winter 2012 collection was inspired by Russian czars and aristocrats, of all things. It was fitting then, that for this show the brand's spokesmodel of seven years in the running, Brazilian Raquel Zimmerman, was replaced by it Brit Rosie Huntington Whiteley, who opened the show. It's a pretty big deal since Rosie has been taking a break from modeling recently, while she films new movie Transformers. She even missed fashion's tour de force--the Victoria's Secret fashion show--because she was "busy."