Creatures of the Wind
September 06, 2012 New York
Even as the duo's interest in silhouette becomes better defined, what makes their work compelling is their obsession with fabric. Their fearless way of mixing color, pattern, and texture situates them as eager apprentices in the same school as Marni's Consuelo Castiglioni or maybe Miuccia Prada. Take the first jacket, which authoritatively combined humble ecru canvas with silvery python-print lamé and lemon leather sleeve detailing, or consider the sweetly romantic evening separates like a tulle-covered hot pink jacquard bustier top with a double-skirted bottom in that same pink jacquard and a purple and yellow brocade. Many of the textiles demand up-close inspection: What looked like a red and blue tweed was made from micro-thin plastic, while brocades were woven with holographic stars that caught the runway lights.
Couture-quality fabrics like these will demand high prices. Still, for every shirtdress embellished with Swarovski crystals by their collaborator, the aptly named artist Kristina Sparks, there was something along the lines of a pair of hardworking wide-leg chambray trousers. Gabier and Peters have grasped that they can't graduate from upstart to arrived without the commerce part of the art and commerce equation. All in all, this was a significant step forward for the Chicago double act.