Hakaan Yildirim landed on the Paris scene during the Spring 2011 collections. And what a splashy arrival it was. Carine Roitfeld was talking him up, he'd just won the ANDAM Award, and, thanks to creative director Mert Alas, one half of the Mert & Marcus photo team, the cream of that season's model crop walked his runway. Two and a half years later, some things remain unchanged. Alas is still in the picture, which means so are the gorgeous catwalkers. But Yildirim has had his challenges. Last season, his collection was reportedly lost in transit between his atelier in Turkey and Paris, which slowed his momentum. Presumably, his sales, too.
The task for Yildirim today, then, was to give himself a jump-start. Souped-up party clothes are as likely to do the trick as anything, especially in a season that's been noteworthy for its sedateness. They're also solidly in the Hakaan repertoire. Working in only black, white, and red, he showed long column gowns with a gothic sensibility, tiny slipdresses that combined matte and shine, and elaborately constructed, peplumed bustier tops worn with sheer trousers or a see-through pencil skirt—plus a couple of leather Perfectos for tossing over it all. Yildirim is a fairly talented dressmaker. The long black gowns with a bit of white peeking out from a single sleeve or the neckline were special. Overall, though, the collection was a real mix, one that lacked a convincing point of view. It wasn't the clincher he needed.