If there's one word that sums up Diane von Furstenberg's Resort offerings, it's easy, and not in a bad way. Von Furstenberg knows about the art of travelling, especially since she's just come back from a trip in China, and it shows. More than we've seen from her before, the pieces lent themselves to different scenarios, helping to take you from the beach to the bar and from day to evening.
As someone that always packs about 70% more clothes than I actually need, the collection has gone a long way in converting me to pack lightly. The simple but subtly draped bright skirts would work as well walking around the city during your holiday by day and could be instantly jazzed up by teaming it with the rectangular clutch bags that appeared throughout along with a grey jacket that was loose and relaxed but carefully draped around the body.
Multi-functionalism aside, the prints were also a strong point this season. They've always been a signature for the brand but more recently they've felt a lot more playful and experimental. In the collection they appeared in several different carnations and also in mixed and matched block coloured variations, which I'm sure the house’s creative director Yvan Mispelaere had a lot to do with.
For someone so well known for looking forward Italo Zucchelli uncharacteristically took a look back with Calvin Klein's S/S13 menswear collection. The collection opened with a triple denim look on a stone wash shirt, jacket and jeans combo, which instantly brought back memories of their eighties and nineties campaigns.
You'll be pleased to hear that Zucchelli didn't complete reject his penchant for looking to the future. As always it was the fabrics where he was really playful. Tuxedo jackets were relaxed and were updated with mesh lapels, shirts came with textured engineered and abstract prints apparently inspired by California summers and bomber jackets were given a futuristic twist with a shiny finish.
While the homage to the brand's American sportswear roots was a welcomed unexpected twist, the collection lacked the energy that it did last season. Since the decision to reflect on the brand's signatures was such a big departure from his normal train of thought, it would have been more interesting to see him update the classics and give them a modern twist that in the way he usually manages to do naturally.
Drama and Marchesa go hand in hand. Nowadays, you'll be hard pressed not to find one of their statement gowns on any big red carpet. While this has always been their unique selling point, it's this uncompromising glamour that can be also be a downfall. For anyone not attending red carpet events every other night of the week, their designs can often feel inaccessible but that's exactly why their resort collections are so good.
As is becoming common, the collection was a lot more reigned in. Short sleeved dresses were feminine and romantic in bright pinks and were so easy to wear and felt like the perfect baby steps into the brand, and perhaps a sign of what's to come with their upcoming accessible line. The glamour was still there, as was their signature gowns full of tulle but this season it was their white feathered dress that really stood out and the more simple over the knee styles with details like beading along the neckline and accentuates shoulders, which will no doubt have stylists fighting over them.
Christopher Bailey always does English gentleman at Burberry so well so the strong suits on offer over the weekend at the brand's S/S13 show came as no surprise. While you can appreciate their craftsmanship (last season over 100 tailors were involved in the construction of each look), it could have quickly felt samey but true to form Bailey shook things up.
This season was all about metallics. The suits and tailoring were broken up by the incorporation of shiny shirts and metallic jackets in bright pink, purple and blue and along the collars of shirts. While they are definitely not the faint-hearted, there's no doubting that they lifted the most subdued pieces. Colour also took centre stage on a series of two toned colour blocked bomber jackets, that replaced the puffa jackets that he showed last season, and came in combinations like aqua green and blue, purple and pink and olive and aubergine.
Today's Jil Sander menswear show was always going to be a big one, as it marked the return of the label's founder after an eight year hiatus. Despite the fact that it was Sander who started the label and created the minimalist aesthetic that continues to hold the house in good stead, it wouldn't be too far-fetched to say that the pressure was on today. RafSimons did such a great job at the house so it was always going to be interesting to see how the brand would fair under her leadership again.
Not much has changed. The S/S13 collection featured pieces that epitomised Sander's paired back, fuss-free style. This season in particular tailoring was a focus and manifested itself on crisp white shirts teamed with black trousers and double breasted blazers or oversized waistcoats. Colour blocking came on cardigans in various combinations of yellow, green, cream and blue and colour blocking was also created by the way models appeared on the runway, as head-to-toe blue looks developed into yellow followed by burgundy.
While the collection was typically Sander and will undoubtedly do well, it didn't have the energy that we've become accustomed to from the brand under Simons' leadership.
Excess has always been the language of Roberto Cavalli's mainline. Sometimes the language is loud and OTT; other times he gets it spot on creating pieces that are the perfect combination of ornate detailing and wearability and his Resort 2013 was just that.
The artisanship that Cavalli is known for was on display with the prints but they were not overwhelming. Instead, the collection tapped into the special but accessible quality that has dominated the shows over the past few seasons.
One of the most striking prints he showed was a blue and white design that felt reminiscent of Willow China crockery. On one dress with a thigh high slit came in a particularly bold style, also appearing on open toe ankle boots and on the lapels of a crisp white suit but he also offered the print in a more subdued style on lightweight sleeveless summer dresses. Floral prints also appeared on wide leg trousers and shirt dresses and while the style is something that has continued to pop up for a while now, Cavalli's version is something I'm sure many would happily jump on board with.
If Dean and Dan Caten took us to school with their Fall 2012 collection, for Resort 2013 we were transported to the nineties. Before that starts to conjure up scary memories of your former Dr Martens-clad self, don't worry because the Dsquared² tribute to the era was a more glam than teenage angst.
The duo tapped into the rebellious spirit of the era by showing a collection full of leather outerwear (think Hells Angels) and gold chains and belts piled on for good measure. While the pieces won't be for everyone, as is often the case with the brand, when you look at each pieces individually, there's definitely something there for everyone.
With the success of his womenswear line and that upcoming collaboration with Topshop on everyone's minds, you'll be forgiven for forgetting that JW Anderson started as a menswear designer. It's only relatively recently that he was so kind as to offer something for us female fans of the brand desperate to get in on the action.
For S/S13 he definitely made sure that his menswear offerings stand out and don't fall into the shadows. As always the collection isn't for the faint hearted. Take the series of teddy bear printed t-shirts that he showed. While it's more than likely that they will go down well at retail, it definitely takes a certain man to dare to wear them. The same is true for a hot pink asymmetric blazer that came styled Lady Gaga-style without anything underneath.
It's with pieces like these that Anderson sometimes goes down a more effeminate route but that being said, he always manages to reign it in and not go too far so as to alienate his more cautious customer. Besides, the collection featured enough core staple pieces like tailored trousers (and bell bottoms!) and ribbed knits to make sure that all bases are covered next season.
When it comes to menswear, us Brits are known for our tailoring and Hackett London delivered that in droves this week. The collection featured a wide selection of three piece suits, often coming with what looked like golf shoes along with the usual pocket squares and ties. While the dandy English gentleman look is something that Hackett have always done well, it all felt a bit stale. Rather than updating the look and doing something different with it as Christopher Bailey did at Burberry last season, the aesthetic hadn't developed.
The models were not always suited and booted though. If the Hackett man goes all out on the tailoring during the week, come weekend he likes to unwind. Okay, so the off-duty look was still a lot more polished than what you would see the average man wearing but nonetheless, it did help to break up the stiffness. Trousers came in casual styles and rolled up to flash a little bit of ankle teamed with brogues, simple tees and deconstructed blazers.
Today's Pringle of Scotland show was bittersweet. When Alistair Carr presented his debut menswear collection for the house, it was met with mixed reviews. Last season saw him take a huge step in the right direction and today he really seemed to come into his own. The only downside is that today marked his final collection as the brand's creative director before they take it in-house. On a more positive note, it was definitely a strong exit and not a bad way to leave.
One of the biggest challenges that Carr has always faced is the brand's knitwear heritage. In the past he's seemed overwhelmed by it leading him to rely on the archive rather than reworking the classic styles and taking them forward. Today was the day that he finally did that. The elongated diamonds incorporated into stripes felt fresh and helped breathe life into the knits and the lightweight neutral toned styles worked well too. Rather than it just being about the knitwear, the tailoring was equally as strong especially on single breasted summer suits, colour blocked trousers and boxy jackets.