AF Vandervorst autumn/winter 2016 collection catwalk show for LFW
Seeing the design duo An Vandevorst and Filip Arickx walking out onto the catwalk, hand in hand, to receive their applause, gave insight to how the couple had refined the AFV aesthetic. An wore a slick all black ensemble, while Filip stunned in tartan trousers, a denim jacket, hoop earrings and mirrored aviators. A hybrid of the two personalities; a compromise between the sensual and sophisticated, and the extravagant and youthful.
The theme of the collection may as well have been “hybrid”, as it was in many senses other than the design collective. A hybrid of avant-garde design and real, wearable fashion, of masculine structure and feminine elegance, of sophistication and juvenile aggression.
Hybrid continued into the garments themselves, no piece was just said piece. A blazer was cut with tailored precision but had bomber jacket sleeves, a parka had elements of an anorak and an overcoat, a midnight blue velvet ballgown was combined with a navy pinstripe kimono. Great lengths of fabric were artfully pinned and tucked so they billowed out from the body creating asymmetric shapes. Paired with sharp tailoring and quality fabrics the look was opulent, opposed to lazy.
Half of the models were masked with shrouds of plush velvet adorned with harsh looking pins, chains and buckles. The haunting look had an air of Issey Miyake, later looks featured defined pleating peeking out of hems, further supporting that the Japanese craftsman may have influenced the collection.
Wide fishnet stockings and thick cleated soles on knee-high boots showed references to the punk era, while leather drainpipe trousers felt mod paired with lace up flat boots. Grey sweatshirts and jogging pants felt more nineties normcore than sports luxe. Distressed denim, school style shirt and ties, sleeves that covered the hands and houndstooth wool sweaters that slid off the shoulder all appealed to youth culture, old and new, and are certain to catch the hearts of many.
Photos: Filippo L’Astorina