Spring 2013 Ready-to-Wear
September 15, 2012 London
John Rocha has recently been designing a glass chapel in the Château la Coste, an arts center in the south of France. It's made up of 400 square feet of crystal components provided by Waterford, the Irish company for which he designs tableware. Rocha claimed the location inspired the palette of his new collection, with its broom yellow, sky blue, and rose pink, but the strangeness of the concept also involuntarily dictated the mournful mood of the clothes. There was something antique about the silken layers crushed like broken blossoms, the cobweb lace draped over a black mini-crini, the hand-knit skirt in virginal wool spectrally veiled—not to mention the hollow-eyed models in big, squashy hats. They told a story of romance gone terribly wrong, like Dickens' lovelorn Miss Havisham projected half a century forward to the Edwardian era, which Rocha's silhouettes echoed with flaring hips and mid-calf lengths. The idea of a glass chapel somehow only served to underscore shattered illusions. So did the soundtrack, The Kills' version of "Pale Blue Eyes," in which Lou Reed's lyrics detail the angst of a cheating lover.