Ok, so I'm a moose of a slow mo. I swan off to the Hyères festival, come back and post a few pithy photos with no indepth coverage. I would be lying if I said the trip was less pleasure, more work-related because being with friends obviously did throw me off course a little. However, Café Mode and Une Fille Comme Moi's newly uploaded video on the Hyeres Festival has put me back into gear and I have finally sorted out the ton of photos I took. Geraldine and Garance's video footage is superb and so my pathetic contribution will pale in comparisom. However, it would also be criminal to leave my photos festering on a memory stick so here they are.
The Villa Noailles in Hyeres I though was a real eye-opener in terms of seeing how the 10 shortlisted designers conceived their collection as each designer was given a room in the villa to showcase their influences, sketches and basically create a homage to their work. You get immersed into the stuff behind what you see on the catwalks. I think I have said before that if more sketches, moodboards, prep work behind the designers' collections were available for public consumptions for collections, I doubt we would be so quick to judge and deride. Afterall an understanding of context is always beneficial for the skeptics that fashion folk can often be.
Émilie Beaumont / Belgium - Romantic industrial. Think hard hats, utility clips and shin pads but somehow made organic looking.
Karin Schoenenberger / Austria - Indian Maharajas, elaborate lace back pieces. I saw her collection at the Antwerp Royal Academy show last year so this was all very familiar.
Julia Krupp / Germany - It all started with a dot and went from there. Very girly and a little naive looking.
Masataka Ohta / Japan - Prints layered on top of each onto traditional Japanese mens robes. Stacked shoes, tall hats made the collection very ceremonial looking as models wafted down the catwalk.
Two Tom / France - There was something strangely endearing about this collection. Men with lacey braces, frilly denim jackets and cute little hats. A play on gender that I loved.
Suzuki Shiori & Emi Sekiguchi / United-Kingdom - This collection won the Public Prize Award (though I suspect their show music had something to do with the public vote - they played a strange mix of Edith Piaf's Je ne Regrette Rien.) Cathedrals imprinted onto delicate chiffon. I'd call these body installations as opposed to clothes.
Peter Wiesmann / Germany - This got a Special Mention from the jury. It reminded me of costumes from the cartoon Noddy but in a good way. Oversized dungaree trousers, childish striped sweaters were there to bring the little boy out in a guy.
Mathilde Botfeldt / Denmark - Apart from a white PVC bomber jacket that had an interesting finger print pattern, this was probably my least favourite collection but it also got a Special Mention from the jury.
Some blurry/half-decent photos from the show.
Émilie Beaumont // Karin Schoenenberger
Julia Krupp // Masataka Ohta
Two Tom // Suzuki Shiori & Emi Sekiguchi
Peter Wiesmann // Mathilde Botfeldt
Peter Bertsch - Belgium - Another Antwerp Royal Academy grad whose collection I saw last year. The collection entitled 'Bionic' is a mix of natural and artificial. The striking use of moulded PVC caught most people's eyes. It was a very complete and comprehensive collection. Everything from stockings, shoes and bags were there. Bertsch was the winner of the 1,2,3 prize which means come next year, a collection designed by him, will be available to buy in 1,2,3 stores. It will be interesting to see how this all transplants onto the high street.
Sandra Backlund / Sweden - This is someone I bigged up last November and really out of all the designers has probably had the most publicity. Everyone gushed over her work at Hyeres and was hotly tipped to win and win she most certainly did. I was incredibly happy to see the Grand Jury Prize awarded to her. Her collection called 'The Ink Blot Test' utilised the knit to great effect. Quite simply they looked like architectural feats. Interestingly, her room in the villa was the most sparse of all the designers, with barely nothing but her pieces hanging over an ink blot covered floor, allowing her work to speak for itself.