Monday, August 4, 2008

texture: the new black.

This fall, it seems like all the bigger/better designers and fashion houses are following through and bringing us many monochromatic looks. Uniforms of solid blue, khaki, gray, and black seem to dominate the runways and showrooms. When you bring this look to your fall wardrobe, be sure to focus on the most important elements - cut and texture.

For both men and women - tailor, tailor, tailor. Pants should sit comfortably, without excess fabric. When pants are tailored properly, you should have just enough space to tuck in your shirt, and you should never have to wear a belt or braces. The same for shirts - whether casual t's, polos, or the more formal button-downs, your shirt should hug your body - not too loose, and definitely not too tight.

Now - texture. One of my favorite looks, especially when colors/hues are monochromatic, is called "degrede". The French term describes transition from one to another. For example, a great degrede look I love in the fall is to wear slate gray wool flannel dress pants (thicker fabric) with a gray chambray (thin, light fabric) button down shirt.

At Dior, I fell in love with a beautiful wool suit - it had fantastic kimono sleeves and was incredibly well draped, but my most favorite part was that the fabric in the skirt was treated with acid - so it looked like lace at the bottom of the skirt. The transition in textures - from very thick, diaphanous wool, to very sheer, translucent at the bottom of the skirt, is a perfect example of degrede. Remember, you want to have some variation from top to bottom, especially when wearing the same colors.

Now, on an unrelated note. I am incredibly excited to share a quick story. Over the weekend, I took one of my fraternity brothers to the mall. Now, to appreciate and understand my excitement, you must understand that this individual isn't exactly the most fashion forward, nor would he strike you as a fashion icon, let alone even slightly fashion savvy. However, after a relatively quick trip to the mall, I must say - I am very impressed. His fashion sense seems very unadulterated. Unlike many people who pretend to be into fashion or who helplessly try to be fashion forward, he genuinely follows his own sense of style. He likes comfort, quality, and utility. He might not necessarily know why he likes something, but he definitely knows what he likes. Classic colors, flattering fits, and the perfect textures, he seems to be right on point. Now of course, there are a few things he could work on; but then again, we all need a little assistance and guidance from time to time. Overall, I'm most excited that he wanted to go shopping with me, and will genuinely appreciate the time we spent together for a very long time.

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