(images via wwd)
after the costume design snafu of ‘black swan’ and the rodarte girls loudly decrying their lack of credit and attention in the popular press (this is both true and served with a heaping dose of sarcasm, given how oft the high fashionies are inclined to praise the two), it is, perhaps, time to give them a little deserved love for their fall 2011 collection, presented at new york fashion week.
as of friend of mine who was moving and had a greedy neighbor once scour her flat for unwanted items to take home (and after said neighbor left with a charming pairs of shoes my friend had wanted to keep), “if she needs it that badly…i hope that will make her a happier person.” et tu, rodarte? time to celebrate them.
anyway, for fall, “We were inspired by the Great American Plains…And all the different things you associate with that area, like ‘Days of Heaven’ and ‘The Wizard of Oz,” laura mulleavy explained. keeping with that (and the sisters’ penchant for referencing random films), the show opened with a song from the 1971 peter fonda movie “the hired hand.” “It’s the opening scene, the sunrise…It puts you in the position of waking up,” laura expounded.
thus, the clothes were replete with references to americana: native american beading, amish quilt-like patterns on dresses, shawls, bishop sleeves, and a lot of high-necked coat-and-dress combos (as below) that felt like something out of “anne of green gables.” (and though, perhaps, opt has no room to talk, in closing out the rather poorly written wsj review, the critic notes, “It reminded me of being a kid in the Flint Hills in Kansas, and made me think.” oh.)
the gowns, likely to be one of the collection’s editorial (and red carpet) high points, breezy abstract confections of pastel hues in blue, beige, and off-white, “all featured a sky and wheat field scene in various hues, depending on the time of the day,” wwd reports. according to laura, ““It’s the idea of how light travels through the day. And Kate and I all of a sudden were obsessed with wheat.”
it was a lovely show, really and truly it was, with that blend fashionies so love of artistic and wearable details, something that looks at once just like rodarte and yet, unique from other designers’ work. but perhaps having skyrocketed much too quickly onto editors’ A+++ list is what now causes the sisters to pitch bitchfits over things like not getting credit for wardrobe design on a film when they actually only created seven looks. yes, their work is often spectacular, but no one is invincible.
furthermore, enticing as it all is, rodarte is still in that precarious position of newbie fashionies where they could be voted out come any time. they haven’t yet amassed body enough of work to really be rollin’ in the repeats—yet—but after a time, it could be seen that their obsure film allusions, road trip references, and we-so-arty schtick is formulaic and tired. or they could be bought by the said-to-be-courting lvmh and have it all be good. i know not where it all will lead, but being the hottest kids in art class sometimes has its downfall: after all, where do they go next? if they retain their power, good for them and my ominous ass will be wrong, but if not, it’s a long fall and a lot of people have particularly sharp sticks.
(see a short video here)