The luxury-brand grand tour of the Resort/Cruise 2016 Collections began in Seoul on May 4 with Chanel, Louis Vuitton in Palm Springs, California, on May 6 and jetted on to Christian Dior in the South of France on May 11. Alessandro Michele’s Resort Collection for Gucci will show in New York on June 4.
Resort pieces are meant for warmer climates during the winter months and arrive in stores in November to February just before the Spring/Summer collections.
Traditionally, resort collections do not attract as much interest as the Spring/Summer and Fall/Winter Ready to Wear shows, which occur biannually in New York, London, Milan and Paris. However, these extravagant presentations are increasingly underlining the development of “seasonless” fashion and adding to the year-round development of trends and global inspiration.
Weekender takes a look at the Louis Vuitton, Chanel and Christian Dior Resort shows which, historically connected with travel, have demanded attention and kept the fashion pack on the move. All three shows have been presented in modernist, minimal backdrops, giving the models a real environment to inhabit while surrounded by curving sweeping forms designed by groundbreaking architects.
Nicola de Lima of Cayman Fashion Group buys resort collections in New York in June. “They are typically very geared towards the Caribbean in terms of color palettes, fabrics and ‘fun in the sun’ wear,” said de Lima. “As it is our kick-off to high season in Cayman, it is a very popular collection and a perfect way to introduce the Spring collections to Cayman.”
Karl Lagerfeld at Chanel has been staging beautifully produced resort shows for many seasons, featuring the intricate workmanship of expert Parisian ateliers – embroidery by Lesage, buttons and jewelry by Desrues, metalwork by Goossens, and feathers by plumassier Lemarié.
The last three resort shows have been presented in Versailles (2013), on a former nutmeg plantation in Singapore (2014), and a man-made island in Dubai (2015).
On the same evening as the Met was paying tribute to Chinese style, Karl Lagerfeld showed his Resort 2016 Collection in Seoul, South Korea at the Dongdaemun Design Plaza, the futurist design by Zaha Hadid. Celebrity attendees included Kristen Stewart, Tilda Swinton, Gisele Bündchen, Isabelle Huppert, Korean singers G-Dragon and Taeyang, Japanese actor Rinko Kikuchi, and Korean actors Ah Sung Ko, Ryeowon Jung, Shin Hye Park and Siwon Choi.
The set was stark white, decorated with large dots, shiny plastic stools and lamps on long stalks in green, blue, yellow, orange and red.
Karl Lagerfeld drew inspiration from the traditional Korean “hanbok” dress, K-Pop and “Gangnam style” (made famous by Psy’s 2012 song about the hip district in Seoul).
“It’s a cosmopolitan idea of the local fashion,” said Karl Lagerfeld in a press release. “It’s an updated Korean version of the Chanel jacket.”
Jackets had large sleeves and rounded shoulders; pants were wide and cropped, some tightened at the hem; skirts were pencil and flared, cut just below the knee; and shorts were ultra-tiny. Cropped bomber jackets were layered over asymmetric slashed knitwear, and the “waistline” on dresses was very high above the bust and trimmed in velvet or grosgrain ribbon.
Stripes and geometric florals were in mixed neon-pop shades of fuchsia pink, coral and intense orange, violet, mint green, turquoise and royal blue. Woven tweeds, textured cotton, metallic broderie-anglaise and patent leather were mixed with lighter, more diaphanous fabrics such as organza, tulle, lace, linen and shantung raw silk. Embellishments were Mademoiselle Gabrielle Chanel’s iconic camellias re-imagined with hand embroidery, and intricate beading.
The models wore Mary-Janes with incorporated socks and chunky black and white pumps. Jewelry was golden or colored metal links with baroque pendants and cuffs in bright colors and the classic handbag shapes were in multicolored tweed or embroidered in sequins.
Black-plaited single or double buns and “crowns” were added to hair. Makeup was cartoon-like with strong darkly drawn-in double eyebrows, eyeliner in the middle of lower lashline, and bright scarlet and pop-pink lips.
Guests were entertained by DJ Mademoiselle Yulia, the French musician Cerrone and DJ Tim Sweeney at the after-party.
The 2014 Louis Vuitton resort collection took place in Prince Albert II and Princess Charlene’s palace in Monaco. This year Nicolas Ghesquière’s fifth collection for the brand was held in Palm Springs, California at the estate of Bob and Dolores Hope, designed by architect John Lautner in 1973.
The stunning modernist circular design became a circuitous catwalk with mirrored boxes for stools, which started inside the glass-walled building and continued around the swimming pool. Tall speakers which played “Leviathan” by Flavien Berger and “Rain” by Ryuichi Sakamoto were made from mirrors and clear Perspex.
Celebrities attending included Catherine Deneuve, Charlotte Gainsbourg, Elizabeth von Guttman, Gia Coppola, Grimes, Kanye West, Michelle Williams, Selina Gomez, Nathalie Emmanuel and Miranda Kerr.
“Palm Springs, a city that initiated the ‘resort’ mindset,” says the press release, “becomes the scene where all these travels play out, like an endless come and go, between here, there and elsewhere …”
This was easy, relaxed dressing with a modern take on chic insouciance, just as suited for urban living as for a chic holiday or festival wardrobe. Cropped flying and leather biker jackets were layered over feminine pieces such as palazzo pants, double-layered midi skirts, the tiniest of shorts and frilled zip-up broderie-anglaise dresses.
Shades were neutral and classic: petrol blue, red, bottle green, khaki, black, white, cream, mulberry accentuated with silver, gold, fuchsia, orange, yellow and turquoise. Patterns included chains, leaves, geometric flowers, marbling, snakeskin and paisley embellished with tiny silver beads, appliquéd patent animal scales, studs, paillettes and feathers.
Accessories were street-style laced, buckled and zip-up canvas and leather ankle boots with ridged soles, and a fresh collection of bags. There were tiny box bags shaped like the iconic Louis Vuitton trunks, and studded quilted leather mini clutches in charcoal and caramel. New prints were palm tree and water patterns in shades of blue juxtaposed with the gold-on-brown “LV” design.
There were wide leather rings, pebble-shaped cuffs and neck-lets and studded large hoop earrings. Narrow buckled obi belts cinched in waists.
Makeup by Pat McGrath was barely there, save for some tribal influenced details such as brown dots around the crease of the eye. Hair was by Paul Hanlon and worn loose, simply center parted to suit the subtle Navajo flavor.
The Christian Dior Resort 2016 show, originally planned for May 9 in Los Angeles was rescheduled to coincide with the opening of Cannes Film Festival on May 13. It took place at Pierre Cardin’s 1989 bubble house (Palais Bulles) by Hungarian architect Antti Lovag in Theoule-sur-mer in the south of France. Celebrities included Marion Cotillard, Dakota Fanning, Zoe Kravitz, and Laura Love, who were treated to fireworks at the end of the evening.
Past resort shows have been held in the Brooklyn Navy Yard New York (2015) with transport provided across the East River by special Dior ferries, and at a specially built minimalist catwalk in Monte Carlo (2014).
For 2016, Raf Simons produced a totally modern collection of gamine, feminine simplicity with a natural look that looked expensive and glamorous. The silhouettes had nipped-in waists and peplums with varying skirt lengths from mini through just below knee to midi
, and perfectly cut tailored short sleeve suits with large patch pockets.
Fabrics were in contrasting checks, bold abstract floral and painterly striped prints, net and artisanal devoree, all in a modern fresh palette.
The new bags were oversized with chain handles in crocodile, floral appliquéd in bold bright-hued diagonal stripes. Models wore brocade strappy laced pointed-toe stiletto ankle boots.
Highlights were the marbled striped mini dresses and pleated skirts in gray, silver, violet, mustard, olive, mulberry, orange and tomato; a silk sundress in jostling shades of bright ochre and lilac rose, and Matisse-like cut-out prints for skirts and ruffled dresses. There were net pleated skater skirts with appliquéd yellow lace, and long-line fishnet shifts worn over printed finely pleated silk midi skirts.
Peter Philips, creative and image director of Christian Dior makeup, gave the models a luxurious luminous beach look a la Brigitte Bardot with gently tousled beach-waved hair and a natural complexion with a hint of angled rosy blush high on the cheekbones. There was subtle eyeliner on bottom lid and minimal mascara.
“It’s a legend that started with Brigitte Bardot,” he said backstage to vogue.com.
“She came to the Cote d’Azur because it was the only place she could be herself.”