A popular source of inspiration for designers is American filmmaker, Wes Anderson’s films. Visible at most fashion weeks, Anderson’s iconic films permeates many seasonal moods. The two films you see most often are The Royal Tenenbaums and The Grand Budapest Hotel. Gabriel Vielma, in London, was inspired by a different Anderson film: The Life Aquatic with Zissou. The film imparted the nautical references that this collection focuses on. Sailor braids inspire the intricate suede detailing on outerwear; nautical knits are another dimension. Printed on an saffron-hued dress was a flock of blue seabirds.
It’s easy to see how The Life Aquatic inspired this collection—the naval references, the quirkiness—but it was a different Wes Anderson film that sprung to mind for me when viewing this collection, Moonrise Kingdom. The aesthetic of this collection gravitates more towards the 2012 coming-of-age film. The hair and make-up in the collection reminded me of Kara Hayward’s character Suzy Bishop, the young woman that the main character falls in love with. The colours, too, evoke the tone of that movie.
It’s not difficult to see why designers seek inspiration in those films. They have a lot of things to bring to collections. For one, romance. The whimsical nature of Anderson’s films lends itself well to the production of a collection, offering it a believable narrative. The aesthetics of the film collides beautifully with the fashion industry. The colours and the tint on Anderson’s films can transform a lifeless collection into a peculiarly-coloured celebration of pastels and sunset-licked hues. The influential characters in the films play muse to many designers. Young Zero Moustafa from The Grand Budapest Hotel, in his bellboy garb; Gwyneth Paltrow as Margot Tenenbaum; the lovebirds from Moonrise Kingdom; Jason Schwartzman in Rushmore. Well-known films to the general public, it’s easy for a customer to tap into the recognisability of these singular characters. Although, Vielma didn’t clearly land on one character or film, he did offer his own riff on the inspirations which had its own sensibilities.
The press release was adamant on its nautical references, but viewing this collection offered many more facets. Whiffs of aviation, avian subtleties, army uniforms, etc. The ideas were all there, but they needed more time, and more looks to be fleshed out. Budget constraints make that impossible, obviously, but perhaps a better curated selection of pieces makes a stronger impact next season.
All images are my own