I' arrived back to colder and chillier weather when suddenly layering an elongated waistcoat over trousers over a high collared bejewelled shirt makes sense. I did say that the geometric equation would not stop at Jonathan Saunders' supremely appropriate A/W 12-3 collection. How could I NOT figure in Prada and Miu Miu at this point when Miuccia has been pushing shades and prints of the sort that might grace seventies yellowing furnitures, since the nineties. The one grumble about this collection that people had was that quite possibly, Miuccia was over-referencing her own archives – refining her own brand of "ugly-chic" and drumming it into you until you have nothing but geometric diamonds in shades of mustard, purple and grey in your head. That one faltering is precisely what makes both these Prada and Miu Miu A/W 12-3 collections so brilliant for me. Seeing the Prada/Schiaparelli exhibition at the Met only confirmed what are the parts of Prada that makes me an eternal devotee (even when she has her off moments) and this quote in particular has stuck with me.
"If I have done anything, it is to make ugly appealing. In fact, most of my work is concerned with destroying‚Äîor at least deconstructing‚Äîconventional ideas of beauty. Fashion fosters clich√©s of beauty, but I want to tear them apart."
So yes – an elongated waistcoat over a pair of trousers over a shirt with shoes that go clomp-clompity-clomp and a granny snap purse almost goes out of its way to be heinous but fortunately, most of us have long been converted to Miuccia's way of seeing things. Or at the very least, she makes us question our ideals of beauty even if we can't personally subscribe to the look at hand. In my case, there's no doubt that the more geometrically complicated and embellished the look, the more my heart soars. When the period of black embellished coats and waistcoats came out like a retro/future funereal march, I could almost feel that something more jovial was around the corner. Indeed, it was going to be a visual onslaught that basically had me foaming at the mouth in the showroom after the show as I zoomed in on every bit of embroidery and every print/embellishment combination.
Likewise for Miu Miu, the more that the trouser suits look like they may have possibly been Austin Powers costume back-ups, the better. The idea of a ruffled tie embellished with mirror embroidery almost sounds like an abomination on paper but again, with the clompity-clomp platforms that Miu Miu are also adept at rigourously producing. Bjork's Violently Happy was the perfect accompaniment to what was my last show of the A/W 12-3 season, a culmination of the mood for the season that really took something that is achingly familiar and still managed to triumph with a revived and refreshed feeling.