24 March 2011

Combining Opposites

"Ashen Tundra, Frozen Roads"
Autumn/Winter 2011

Jona has gone from strength to strength over the past few seasons, and the latest Autumn/Winter 2011 collection was by far the best offering to date.  I thought I would share the lookbook photographs, but for a better look at the fabrics and details, check out the backstage photographs by Adam over at Le 21ème Arrondissement.  I keep meaning to write a full review, but sometimes words just seem to get in the way.

Suffice to say that I thought the womenswear trumped the menswear, although admittedly he did carry over some menswear pieces from past collections for the women.  I suppose it provides a far more easy and carefree take on unisex clothing, without the in-your-face androgyny of a designer such as Rad Hourani.  Indeed the menswear pieces seem to fit just right, blending seamlessly with the womenswear offerings - I guess one could think of Hedi-era Dior Homme, which was produced in smaller sizes with female customers in mind.  Similarly Ann Demeulemeester's pieces are often far more unisex than one would initially think (I happen to fit into women's IT38 trousers quite well).  Jona's tailoring was impeccable, and I look forward to handling the pieces in person.  Whilst the Spring/Summer offerings that are currently in store are nice, they are that little bit short of blowing me away, however I have a feeling that this collection just might...

I absolutely love both these look, although I would prefer some of Ann's riding boots, or even the back-lace boots, on the menswear look, and some of Yohji's flats for the womenswear look.  I was actually watching Wim Wenders' documentary Notebook on Cities and Clothes once again yesterday (I tend to watch it whenever I am feeling drained and in need of inspiration), and was struck by something Yohji said - He can do nothing for women in high heels and silk stockings with a seam running up the back, because they remind him of those women he used to have to cut dresses for when he worked at his mother's dressmaking shop.  Just like Yohji, I think there is something incredibly beautiful and simple about a long skirt worn with flats or a pair of lace-ups.  It is that sliver of bare ankle between the shoe and the hem of the skirt.  Sometimes less really is more.

In the menswear look I suppose it is the shape and silhouette that I enjoy - the sharply defined tailoring.  Yet paradoxically, or perhaps it is quite fitting, in the womenswear I find the volume and draping, that teases with its reveal, to be the most alluring aspect.  I like the juxtaposition of strength and fragility between the looks.  I think I have found myself over the past few months seeking that sense of strength more and more - although I do try to keep the balance.  Indeed I like the fact that the jacket on the menswear look is styled over a simple long sleeve.  The stacked sleeves and stretch fabric covers the body in a quite soft and sensual manner.  In a way it reminds me of Rick Owens, in that you get the semi-sheer tops and unashamed fragility, which is then paired with the monumentality and power of a sculpted and tailored jacket.  There is no tension between the two, but rather two interweaving threads that perfectly encapsulate an experience. 

I would happily wear the womenswear look above.  I have been particularly keen to try the shorts and leggings combination for a while now (not to mention leggings underneath a pair of those destroyed Undercover jeans).  However I think I shall need to find a pair of cropped trousers rather than shorts, just like this look, because I have extremely thin legs to work around.  I am thankfully quite tall though, so hopefully I can make it work without the risk of visually stunting myself - cropped trousers are quite the minefield if not properly tackled.

You wear the hers, I'll wear the his.



  1. I love an asymmetrical cut on a coat. The men's looks are exactly my kind of thing.

  2. So inspiring. Love the way you write! Such a cool collection. If only I had the jacket. Those boots. I'd feel so self-made, perhaps.

  3. Oh wow! The proportions and layering in these are very cool! Love the colours too - I'm all for mix 'n' match greys and charcoals!

  4. The boats are a-mazing. I love them, but don't know if I could rock them.

  5. I'm not one for muted colours and structured jackets, but something about the styling and the pieces themselves makes me want that whole look. The jackets and boots are beautiful!