Count on Kinder Aggugini to come up with a take on nautical that is simultaneously the world's least and most straightforward. Least straightforward in that Aggugini has spun himself a baroque tale, by way of inspiration, that takes in The Old Man and the Sea, a girl and a boat both called "Lola," and a sailing trip to Cuba provoked by a desire to escape the repressive bonds of dry land life. That's a pretty substantial narrative framework on which to hang the handful of seafaring prints that made up the core of Aggugini's collection. Buoys, mermaids, anchors, sea horses, and swordfish all made an appearance in the characteristically arch prints, the kookiest of which was a map of imaginary archipelagos. Most straightforward: buoys, mermaids, etc. Least straightforward: fake antique maps of made-up places, based loosely on bourgeois tea-towel prints. The train of Aggugini's thought visits some rather distant stations.
Really, though, the un-straightforwardness of this collection was all in the service of clothes that were pretty conventional. The silhouettes were almost all non-challenging—pinafore dresses, dungarees, button-downs, and shrunken tailoring comprised the core of the collection, with a recurring appearance by a pleated skirt with an intriguing bagged waist. The palette was pretty by-the-book, too, girded by ur-nautical red and blue. There were some eccentricities here—Aggugini being Aggugini and all—but they read merely as flashes of madcap. Octopus tentacle dévoré velvet is odd, but not quite odd enough to outweigh the normalizing look of, say, a shrunken navy double-breasted blazer worn with long, cherry-red shorts. Aggugini is a designer with zero fear of the overt, but that look was a tad obvious, even for him.
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