The Shows (Jean-Pierre Braganza and Todd Lynn)
Written by Steven Carver // During the second day at The Shows, there was a palpable buzz within the walls of The Ritz Carlton’s ballroom because the designers showing are Jean-Pierre Braganza and Todd Lynn. Two men with edgier attitudes, and both stars in their own way.
Jean-Pierre Braganza might not be as famous as his colleague showing today, but it didn’t mean he was any less talented. Also a graduate of Central St. Martin’s, he worked for Roland Mouret (who knows a thing or two about shape and construction) before going off on his own.
Opening the show with top model, Liisa Winkler in a studded sheath, Braganza meant business. Even with drape-y fabrics, he cut his clothes with a purpose; strength. The graphic quality continued with tailored suiting, architectural prints, and dresses with skeletal cut-outs.
It wasn’t all hard. They were long, lean lines, drop waists (cleaner than the 20’s feel of Gucci’s latest collection), dolman sleeves, crepe de chine housecoats and a series of jersey dresses that appeared to be kept together by a series of tack stitches; pull one thread and watch them unravel.
Even with most pieces relying on a palette of white, buttercup and shades of gray (not to mention black, which seems to play a part in any collection, nowadays), there was a flash of Vuarnet-like orange and fuchsia.
And the shoes were another – incredibly sexy, tall and thin – story to tell. No wonder why female models get paid more than their male counterparts.
While Braganza brought strength to the modern woman, Todd Lynn adds an element of edge for his famous clients in the music industry. Removing the fur (it is a spring/summer collection, after all) and the excessive trimmings (no silver-capped shoulders to be found) eliminated some of the harshness from his earlier collections.
There were silky separates (pyjama bottoms, anyone?), obi-like tops, careful draping, and more than one bustle seen on the backside of a few models. To masculine-ize things, shirttails dropped and flaps hung from the sides of shirts, but there was a bit too much in the way of raw and frayed edges (makes me want to whipstitch some hems). There’s still a lot of leather, of course, but it was a pleasant surprise to see a few knit pieces constructed on the bias; it made for one sexy dress.
The mostly light (white, gray, taupe, blue) pieces felt soft, but silver details added a rocker edge, and a shirt made entirely (of what it seems like) safety pins is sure to be an editorial hit for the next season.
And, with that, The Shows came to a close. Another season gone, another season to look forward to. Just as trends come and go, we’ll have to wait until the spring to see whether people will be wearing them. If not, there will always be another series of The Shows…
(Photos courtesy Jenna Marie Wakani via TorontoLife.com)