Amsterdam, And Beyond

And Beyond
‘s F/W 2010 collection, designed by Brigitte Hendrix and Jolanda van den Broek, was all about the haze of winter. Held at Westergasfabriek, a former gas factory, the presentation lacked the models, bright lights, and catwalk like the other shows at Amsterdam Fashion Week.  Guests were treated to mulled wine from a large cauldron by three young girls in bewitching makeup–a “Double, double toil and trouble” type of experience. Next, attendees moved into a dark room to view the collection’s looks, each of which were placed in individual plexiglass containers that would occasionally dim for a few seconds of smoky special effects. Broadcast blasted on the soundtrack in time.

“Winter has a lot of magical nights. We don’t make clothes for every day, we make clothes for special moments. We were thinking, ‘What are the special moments in winter? New Year’s Eve, lightening, fireworks,'” Hendrix explained.

The result? The collection–when you could see it–was full of thin silks and shiny velvets digitally printed with iconic animal and florals in a bruise-y palette. The silhouettes themselves were smoky and fell in places on the body that enhanced the statement patterns.

The smoke and mirrors, while is attractive for show, doesn’t really work at the heart of being a designer. As Hendrix elaborated, “If you don’t stay true to being a designer and making things for special moments, the quickness of the system sucks you up in smoke.”