Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Design Indaba: Doreen Southwood Review

As I said to Doreen Southwood on Sunday afternoon, after she had presented her collection at Design Indaba for the final time, "I am worried that you are toning things down." With a deliberate attempt to go more mainstream and appeal to the commercial buyers, Doreen presented a lovely collection of contemporary fashion, beautifully styled for the season, with standout pieces that will almost certainly get her the attention she deserves.
Despite what I call the "lack of crazy", Doreen still managed to be the first to present the new Gaucho pants on the runway. Alongside exaggerated, flowing palazzos. Still intriguing and compelling me to look closer, her collection was deceptive in its simplicity, being in fact incredibly detailed and intricate. I think it was a fantastic achievement and one that takes her another step forward.
The only reason that I miss the more avante garde presentations is that Doreen is one of the few designers in the country whose clothes will appear normal and then you look closer and you have an authentic WTF moment as you wonder how that happened. And I always like it when a designer can do that.
But this is an edgy collection, designed to sell. And I hope it does. I have my eye on that blue frock with the pleat insets, so back off.
Doreen Southwood available at Mememe in Long Street, Cape Town and soon Johannesburg.

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