Amidst the ruffles and lace and wedges and sparkle of fashion week, it’s always nice to see a sliver of menswear dedicated designers. And one can only hope of the day when menswear and womenswear shows will merge sans distinction, for being a runway fashion man isn’t quite the anomaly is it?
Jorge Afanador chose Trees of Life as his design inspiration, and covered a plethora of metaphors from the vibrant, light and colorful natural dwellings, as well as brought to life their sensual midnight quality with darker hues and a more voluminous, gothic feel. Akin to the greys and popping colors in womenswear, the menswear focus paid homage to the sparkling night with dark reds, branchy greens and ethereal blacks, before moving into a day of sunshine.
The tree theme progressed with a majestic looking female ensemble, where gold embroidery trickled seductively around her bodice on a fitted shirt and one leg of leggings, dispersed infrequently with large jewels like a starry night. The accompanying menswear was charming: a black and grey block stitched suit, oddly parted iwith vertical spacing between the inner legs, but with a sumptuous blazer that was instantly wearable.
The one obvious thing to note in the collection was the odd paw shaped shoes adorned by both men and women, in bling colors that either matched or clashed with the outfits. As a male model quoted “It’s like being on my tippy toes for a long, long time”, they added a vertical alignment at the expense of apparent discomfort, but were nonetheless captivating for every eyeball and lens.
The red mood was much appreciated by my red-loving self, with Middle Eastern fashion style rose motifs, which would usually look atrocious. But having seen similar prints in Delhi Fashion Week, I was more than pleased to see them as part of a men’s blazer, making it a perfect fit for a noir, seductive evening. A metal floret bloused damsel with a similar skirt was the lady’s equivalent, which left more to be desired owing to lack of cohesive clarity.
The rose blazer model shared his croc print black-on-black pants with another model who sported an entire animal textured suit, which exuded a decadent gleam that made it perfect for a night out, a vivacious party or a creative day job. Definitely an addition to my black suit with a twist collection.
The pectoral pumping black onesie felt rather next-door hoodie-style than luxe, contradicting so much when the Tarzan’s accomplice-like leading ladies emerged in jungle, leafy colored attire on bare bodices, made intentionally of shards of fabric, mesh and lace.
Ditto for the tarnished green crushed satin gown with succulent crochet shoulders, which was to match with two men who looked ravishing but evoked a feeling of something amiss; shards of structured black fabric as a black sweater which looked rather mainstream, and a gleaming block print party blazer that couldn’t rise above its plastic appearance, but was redeemable courtesy of its short rounded cut and shirtless style.
After a few tete-a-tetes with the models backstage, understanding their grievances towards the shoes, but fascination with the natural sounding tree theme, it was time to call it a party.
After party, that is.