32 posts tagged "Hanne Gaby Odiele"
When Karl Lagerfeld rounded up the fashion set in Dallas for Chanel’s rodeo of a Métiers d’Arts show back in December, sending all manner of Lone Star-inspired embroideries and fringed suede (not to mention a Chanel No. 5 holster) down the runway, we figured we’d see a Western revival. Just weeks later, both Alexander Wang and Fausto Puglisi featured city-ready cowgirl boots in their respective Pre-Fall lineups. Not long after that, Donatella Versace went maverick with her Fall menswear collection, which boasted updated chaps, bolo ties, and sharp suits embellished with horseshoe, cactus, and sheriff’s badge motifs. And don’t forget Ralph Lauren. An original pioneer of the frontier style, he put his Polo women’s collection on the catwalk for the first time, and trotted out serape blanket coats and prairie skirts. The Americana movement has taken hold in the streets, too, with models such as Hanne Gaby Odiele incorporating old-school bandannas into their off-duty wardrobes. Stetsons and 10-gallon hats, meanwhile, have become a phenomenon in their own right: The wide-brimmed toppers have replaced fedoras as hipsters’ headwear of choice. But fashion isn’t the only industry romanticizing the Wild West. A new wave of Western flicks (including Tommy Lee Jones’ The Homesman, which debuted at Cannes over the weekend) will hit theaters this year.
Cristóbal Balenciaga reputedly made only three journeys afield in his lifetime and certainly never traveled anywhere as far-flung as Asia. However, forty-odd years after his passing, the house of Balenciaga, with Alexander Wang at the helm, staged its own intrepid China expedition, bringing forty-eight archive pieces to Beijing.
Handpicked by Wang, the selection from Cristóbal Balenciaga’s Parisian years (1937 to 1968) highlighted the key pieces in his oeuvre. “I think it would be doing an injustice for everybody not to see it,” Wang explained. Enshrined at the center of the exhibition, therefore, was the famous Infanta dress (1949), which shows the unremitting influence of Balenciaga’s Spanish heritage on his work; the Babydoll dress of 1958; and the famed wedding dress from his last collection presented in 1967.
Though he epitomized that old world of couture, Balenciaga was the greatest pioneer of them all. Blockbuster pieces aside, the Fishnet dress (1964), an overlay of net upon a black sheath inspired by the fishermen in his hometown of Getaria, and a reversible fur-lined silk-nylon coat (1959) were just a few examples of the utterly modern. A little-known fact about the famously reticent designer was his penchant for filming his presentations in the last decade of his career, and the videos provided illuminating glimpses of “the master of us all” at work. A suit worn by Marlene Dietrich in the 1950s and the Sari dress, a design owned by Ava Gardner, Elizabeth Taylor, and Dodie Rosekrans, also served as a reminder of his legendary clientele.
The venue, the China Academy of Oil Painting, was chosen for the church-like structure in its midst (actually the school’s lecture hall), where Balenciaga’s SS’14 collection was presented. “We could have easily shown the Fall collection,” Wang explained before the show, “but I wanted something that would penetrate immediately.” Along with the existing outfits, therefore, the models (Shu Pei, Ming Xi, Xiao Wen Ju, Hanne Gaby Odiele, et al.) sported fifteen new looks from a capsule collection released exclusively in Balenciaga’s China stores immediately following the show.
The fourth issue of Document Journal hits stands tomorrow, and although it doesn’t bill itself as a strictly “fashion” title, you could never tell from the table of contents. The new issue features an array of editorials and interviews from the likes of hairstylist Didier Malige, Liya Kebede, Calvin Klein Collection’s Italo Zucchelli, Kris Van Assche, and Raf Simons. We’re particularly excited to see Style.com’s own Tommy Ton interview Hanne Gaby Odiele about what it’s like to be the constant focus of street-style attention. (Turns out, it takes serious nerves of steel to keep a calm look while running between shows and navigating through throngs of aggressive photographers.) Below, we have an exclusive preview of something a little more intimate than the street style we know and love Hanne for: a one-on-one tour of her favorite Chinatown spots with photoblogger Daniel Arnold.
Document Journal No. 4 hits stands tomorrow.