Saturday, 26 September 2015

Belstaff Women's SS16; The Beauty of Power‏

Belstaff’s Spring/Summer’16 collection is inspired by the beauty manifested in power: from the thrust of waves to the hum of a throttled engine, some of the greatest forces are also some of the most beautiful, and it is this dichotomy which Delphine Ninous, VP Women’s Design for Belstaff, seeks to capture here.

 It is perhaps Nature’s greatest force - that of the sea – that provides this collection with its most prominent theme. From the mottled play of light in the shallows to the richer hues of the deep oceans, the ebb and flow of this ultimate energy is explored through texture, form, colour and silhouette, providing a unique meditation on femininity.

 A key element to the collection is the water reflection print, a mottled play of light which has been used evocatively in a protective wax-cotton jacket, T-shirts and a tiered silk-georgette dress.
The print is complemented throughout the collection with elements of transparency.

 Playing with the idea of breaking waves and wind-blown grains of sand, Belstaff has introduced a white chalky coating on leather, linen and knitwear fabrics to give them a tactile sense of degradation. The wavy lines left in the sand by the receding tide also serve as the inspiration for a quilted fitted bomber jacket.

 Taping features throughout the collection, inspired by the brand’s motorcycle and military heritage.
 It delivers an element of strength and reinforcement in leather pieces such as a fitted racing blouson and in four-pocket jackets and coats, while elsewhere taping has been developed more conceptually, in particular a full-length white dress with patchwork effect.

 Referencing pinstriped surfboards and moto racing stripes, this collection features many striping details suggestive of momentum and speed.

 Given Belstaff’s history of pioneering technical fabrics, this collection continues in the same vein by using innovative coating techniques on linen to add a protective quality to an otherwise lightweight luxury fabric. Organza and silk provide fluidity in contrast to the structure of vegetable tanned leather. With the addition of lightweight suede, coated cotton and wax elements, the entire collection is extremely tactile and textural.

 The collection plays with transparency and opacity in a range of colours - and significantly and unusually for Belstaff, predominantly with pastels - many referencing the sea and the coast from sky to marine blues, to textural whites and rich hues of sandy beige. Faded earthy khakis and olives reference military fatigues.

 Rope detailing and fishing net motifs play into the knitwear offering, with graphic mesh effects once again blurring the frontier between transparency and opacity.

 Boot sandals with a cutaway heel and a corrugated leather upper represent strength in femininity by combining military detailing with a much more casual summer aesthetic.

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