Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Doll's Eye View: Paris Fall '14 Fashions Pt. 2

The Paris market is the industry I know best. As I said in the previous post, designers will often trot out conceptual items to show off their creativity. Ultimately all of the sales action takes places in a showroom where modifications are discussed. Most of the international brands have teams of designers in each region of the world who, using the Paris catwalk as inspiration, will redesign the collection to suit the sensitivities of the customer base.

Paris helps move fashion forward. While the media tends to zero in and publicize the most outrageous, industry professionals dissect those designs looking for ideas that can be translated into mainstream styles. The craziest things sashaying down the runway may very well influence color palettes, fabric choices, even the color of makeup and the style of accessories we're likely to see on store shelves. So while I have focused largely on styles that I think can be translated into doll fashions, I have also included a few of those extreme items with the hope they might inspire you to take a few chances, be it with fabric, silhouette or mixtures of pattern, texture or print.
Midnight Chill
Again, there is a LOT of black all over the runways. What's new is that silhouettes have become more ample. Note how the trousers have a lot of fullness. Also note how skirts have so much more flare than in previous seasons.There is also attention drawn to the waist, marked with a variety of belts ranging from small to the great big cummerbunds.


Let's now take a walk on the wild side. I love the in-your-face "statement pieces" like Japanese designer, Junya Watanbe. I started to do something with....garbage bags to recreate the jacket to the extreme right. But we can use more noble materials like ribbon trim, poufs of satin, black silk flowers or frayed fabric to add surface texture to an otherwise simple jacket or parka!

The Style That Shagged Me

As with every other market, there are lots of fur jackets and coats. However, here in Paris, designers have also explored the notion of shaggy fabrics and fibers. If you knit, you should chose those gorgeous yarns with lots of bits and fibers. Or, look for fabrics that shimmy or even those with shaggy bits of torn, frayed fabric added to the surface. Use them to make a jacket or coat or in touches as a trim.

A Touch of Class
Of course there were full length fur coats. However by now, we've seen this all before. So I'm featuring furry bits used as trim, as a collar, or a stole. For the most part fur remains in neutrals and greys. But feel free to add a pop of color to your dolly's wardrobe with a bold colored bolero.

Animal Crackers

Texture is one of the most important elements in fashion for next Fall/Winter. That includes bold animal patterns that are printed, embossed, stamped woven into the fabric. Again...keep things simple with an easy to wear, easy to make silhouette.

Stain Glass
There's not a total black out in Paris. The best looking use of color is found in abstract patterns. The color is intense. The patterns mesmerizing. The silhouettes are, again, simple. A touch of "foil" adds a bit of spark.

Miyake's Sound Waves
With Issey Miyake, we love the organic shapes and, the pleated fabric cut into interesting shapes.

Valentino's Autumn Florals
Very feminine silhouettes are drenched in a somber color palette shaped into florals. There's a bit of metallic here, but subdued. Note how the dresses are simple bodice with flared skirts. And again, the appearance of the cape!

Palette Cleanser
 No glitz. An odd assortment of glamour. Variations on the notion of eveningwear. It's as simple as black and white.

Inkjet Florals
Super chunky embroidered flowers on a flesh tone base, we love the drama of it all. You can use lace, lace trim  stitched to a sheer fabric to achieve the essence of these dresses.

Again, there are many, many things on this page I intend to revisit!!!

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  1. Hi April! I love the Balenciaga outfit and the other two sets you made. Do you organize exhibitions of your miniature fashions? That would be so great to attend. To come back to our Belgian designers: we are very proud here of "our" world known designers and the Antwerp fashion academy :-). I'm going to read all of your posts from the beginning and enjoy the lovely mini outfits and pictures, you have an interesting and inspiring blog!

    1. Thank you Nymphaea for your kind words and encouragement. For the moment, I haven't planned any exhibitions of my doll-fashions. I think I still have a ways to go before that can happen. However..I've been busy developing short video tutorials for some of the posts. I'll be putting the first one up soon.

  2. Hi April, I love the Balenciaga outfit too! Your suggestions are all very intriguing, the Issey Miyake dresses really impressed me. The girls must be exausted, but this is just the beginning, I feel we will see more of your creations soon!!!

  3. Hi Billa. I could have kept sewing!!! Whenever I can get to a decent fabric store, I have every intention of looking for crystal pleated fabric so I can try out a few of those MIyake pieces! And yes, the girls are exhausted but are not complaining. They were paid off in clothes!!!!! :-D


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