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Category: Dries Van Noten

Paris Fashion Week: It's win, place and show at Dries Van Noten


Many of the spring and summer 2012 men's collections that hit the runways of Milan and Paris over the last two weeks have referenced the sporting life, from leisure-time pursuits (such as Prada's golf moment) and the upcoming London Olympics (Vivienne Westwood Man, Missoni) to competitive sports of the upper class (Moncler Gamme Bleu's fencing-themed collection).

But according to Dries Van Noten, he didn't start out with the notion of creating a collection that drew inspiration from horse racing and the equestrian arts; that's just where he ended up. "We were doing all these technical things -- garment bonding and taping -- to these light silks and satins and I started thinking about circumstances in which a man might find them appropriate to wear, which lead to the idea of jockey's silks."


That result was a collection that included skinny-legged trousers with an extra-narrow ankle, Color-blocked blousons with deep V-shapes angling in from shoulders to navel, and barley-colored tweed jackets with leather detailing.


There was also a touch of nautical-preppy flair: navy blue blazers; a red-white-and-blue horizontal stripe pattern appearing on trousers, shirts and generously cut Bermuda shorts; parkas and windbreakers in a crumpled blue nylon so lightweight it billowed with every step as if buffeted by a sea breeze; and a narrow, vertical version of the tricolor stripe that was vaguely reminiscent of semaphore signals.

The collection was heavy on the outerwear pieces -- and heavy-handed on the technical details: Thick, black hot-melt adhesive tape (usually used on a garment's interior for waterproofing purposes) framed the exteriors of pockets, accented zippers and appeared as patches; even sandals could be seen sporting strips of the tape across the top of the foot; and garment bonding was used extensively. But it was all balanced out by the simple, crisp, white dress shirts, the one-piece jumpsuits in washed silk and the open-weave knit sweaters.


The result was a collection that managed to meld the elegance of nearly diaphanous luxury fabrics with the advances of technical outerwear, and it puts Van Noten squarely in Paris Fashion Week's winner's circle.


Paris Fashion Week: Dries Van Noten's symphony of color and print

Paris Fashion Week: Dries Van Noten's hero worship

Paris Fashion Week: Lazy days with Dries Van Noten

-- Adam Tschorn in Paris

Photos: Looks from the Dries Van Noten spring-summer 2012 runway collection shown during Paris Fashion Week. Credit: Michel Euler / Associated Press

Paris Fashion Week: Dries Van Noten's symphony of color and print


Belgian designer Dries Van Noten's collection was a symphony of clashing "so-bad-they're-good" color blocks, textures and prints.

The color palette included burnt orange, jade and caramel, with flashes of metallic embroidery. Draped, asymmetrical dresses, cape-sleeve shirts and knee-length skirts had as many as four contrasting prints, with bonsai, ikat, feather motifs and floral motifs alternately bringing to mind mid-century modern interiors, Chinoiserie and Spirographs.


Coats in nubby tweeds came with single fur lapels, and chunky turtleneck sweaters two-toned. A skirt in a caramel-colored plasticky-swirl was reminiscent of a woodcut.

Van Noten described the look as "a dialogue between Ziggy and Diaghilev." And it's true, the collection wasn't so much designed as orchestrated, with sweeping gestures across a broad stage. Bravo maestro!

-- Booth Moore in Paris


Drires Van Noten fall-winter 2011 runway collection photo gallery


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Photos: Looks from the Dries Van Noten fall-winter 2011 runway collection shown during Paris Fashion Week. Credit: Jonas Gustavsson and Peter Stigter / For The Times

Paris Fashion Week: Dries Van Noten's hero worship

Dries van noten AW11

Dries Van Noten's runway show was set in the main hall of the Musée Bourdelle, under the watchful gaze of immense stone sculptures -- towering military men rearing up on horseback, gargantuan bare-chested archers with bows drawn and outsize sinewy soldiers with swords raised in mid-strike.

It wasn't by accident; the designer's Fall and Winter 2011 menswear collection was a celebration of the heroic and the gallant -- what the designer referred to in the show notes as "manful elegance."

For Van Noten that meant a mix of military influences -- gold hand-embroidered details that evoked the notion of military braiding, belted trench coats, bandleader jackets, high-collared military-style shirts and full-legged trousers that recalled naval uniforms of another era. 

But to that he added some of the sartorial touches of nobility -- detachable fur collars and lapels, pagoda shoulders on silk shirts and jackets and luxurious camel car coats.

The silhouette was a bit of a contrast -- jackets and shirts were tailored and trim, while trousers were full or oversized, keying into a seasonal trend, and the color palette was grounded in the navy blues, blacks, whites and khaki colors of military-issue uniforms.

Military motifs are common almost to the point of overkill in menswear, but that wasn't the case with Van Noten's approach, which proves that a talented designer can keep step with trends while marching to the beat of his own drummer.

-- Adam Tschorn in Paris


Photos: Looks from the Dries Van Noten Fall and Winter 2011 men's runway collection, shown on Jan.  20, 2011, during Paris Fashion Week. Credit: Jonas Gustavsson & Peter Stigter / For the Los Angeles Times

Paris Fashion Week: Lazy days with Dries Van Noten


Menswear-inspired clothing has been almost totally absent from the runways for the spring 2011 season -- until now.

Belgian designer Dries Van Noten used classic menswear pieces as a way to achieve easy summertime dressing. He brought color and lightness to oversized blazers, full trousers, trench coats, even jeans, all dip-dyed in Easter-egg shades of pink, violet and cornflower blue.

Van Noten seemed to be suggesting a new kind of uniform, following on the heels of the fall season's military styles. Only this time, it was all about relaxed silhouettes and paring down -- the ease of a pale sparkly sweater paired with wide-legged white cargo pants, or a silk dress in a delicate floral print, cinched with an iridescent-silver skinny belt.

There were even a couple pairs of floral silk pajama pants. Talk about no-fuss fashion.

-- Booth Moore in Paris

Dries van Noten spring-summer 2011 runway collection photo gallery

Photos: Looks from the Dries Van Noten spring-summer 2011 runway collection shown during Paris Fashion Week. Credit: Jonas Gustavsson & Peter Stigter / For The Times

Your morning fashion and beauty report: Paris runways, Claudia Schiffer and the Olsen twins

Dries Van Noten Some of the biggest names in fashion will be showing their latest on the runways in Paris on Wednesday, when Fashion Week picks up speed. Booth Moore will be blogging about the good, the bad and the ugly for the rest of the week.

Claudia Schiffer is planning to launch her own cashmere line based in Germany. The model will work under the title "creative director," and the line will be for fall. The name of said venture? Claudia Schiffer, of course. [WWD]

Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen's fashion label, The Row, has announced a partnership with Microsoft's Bing search engine. Bing will host a "behind the scenes" video of the line's Fashion Week in Paris, which includes, yes, an interview with the twins. [San Francisco Chronicle]

Think it's easy being Heidi Klum? No, it's not! It takes a village to prepare and primp her for all her "Project Runway" appearances, and People magazine has an article and video devoted to that very fact. Read it and discover, among other things, that Heidi likes to tickle Tim Gunn. For real.

And finally, Sephora is launching an interactive space (which can be accessed at or on its Facebook page) where viewers can get advice from friends and professionals on makeup, watch videos and (of course) buy products. And, to finish the experience, users can "upload a haul video." [Stylelist]

 -- Alice Short

Photo: Models at the Dries Van Noten runway show. Credit: Francois Guillot / AFP/Getty Images



Paris Fashion Week: Dries Van Noten opens the week on high note; Rochas and Giles Deacon look back

Dvn-paris-fall-2010 It was a wonderful start to Paris Fashion Week to see a collection as focused as Dries Van Noten's. The Belgian designer pared down the ethnic embellishment and Ikat prints of spring in favor of something more tailored and military-influenced for fall.

Standout pieces included a herringbone pants suit with darts pinching the waist of the jacket, fantastic utility pants with zippers or straps to cinch and taper them at the ankles, and a military flack jacket with gilded embroidery on the sleeves.

Not forgetting the feminine side of the fall season's masculine/feminine equation, there were also painterly blue floral print satin skirts in full, 1950s silhouettes, and the simplest gold lame dress with 3/4 sleeves that is one of those forever wardrobe building blocks.

Speaking of blocks, the block-heeled pumps looked very fresh in leather, satin, or most intriguingly, tweed.
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Paris Fashion Week: With ethnic-looking prints, Dries Van Noten returns to his roots

Dries van noten One could easily get the impression, from all the bubble skirted cocktail frocks and lacy lingerie looks on the runways this season, that most women don't get out of bed until the sun goes down.

Luckily, there are a few designers who can be counted on for interesting day wear, including Belgian phenom Dries Van Noten, who started the craze for mixing ethnic-looking prints several years ago, and has now returned to it.

Coats, boxy jackets and slim pants in Ikat prints, zigzag and mosaic-like jacquards, mixed it up on the runway with new classics, such as spectator pumps reinterpreted with a green heel, pearl necklaces worn in multiples with exotic-looking jeweled clasps, and the perfect pair of loose-fit khaki drawstring pants.

Silk dresses in sumptuous colors and mixed paisley prints came in easy wrap front styles, or were draped and tied with the ends left trailing behind. And those cuffed, Ikat print shorts that tied at one side might have been the most refined shorts of the season.

-- Booth Moore

Photos: Dries Van Noten's spring-summer 2010 runway

All the Rage: More from Paris Fashion Week

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Dries Van Noten's Spring-Summer 2010 runway. All photo credits: Peter Stigter & Jonas Gustavsson / For The Times

Fashion Diary: Fall shoe showdown


Gossip, first impressions, trends in the making, celebrities and style setters. A regular feature by fashion critic Booth Moore.

Fall boots, there's nothing like shopping for them. At the opening of the fabulous Mona Moore shoe boutique on Abbot Kinney in Venice on Thursday night, chicettes Tara Sandroni and Tracee Ellis Ross were going ga-ga over these new Phi buckled creeper booties (above, $1,095), which perfectly capture  fall's rough 'n' tumble rock 'n' roll trend.

I, on the other hand, fell hard for a pair of suede Dries Van Noten booties with python heels ($670). In the less naughty expensive boot category, I'm also a fan of Zara's $108 studded leather version (reminiscent of a Christian Louboutin style from last fall), and Elizabeth & James' open-toed boots with lace insets ($350 at Saks). 

Of course, while I may fancy myself a kick-butt boot type of girl, what I really live in are J. Crew ballet flats, and I adore the new $225 "Colleen" style with the roses on top (at right).Jcrew_jpg

I am also a recent jelly shoe convert. That's right, they're not just for summer anymore.

Melissa_jpg The Brazilian footwear label Melissa has collaborated with a ton of people, including architect Zaha Hadid and fashion designers J. Maskrey and Alexandre Herchcovitch. It was my friend Heather over at the Foodinista blog who turned me on to the Vivienne Westwood for Melissa styles for fall, and Brooklyn boutique Epaulet's online site has a great selection.

I picked up a pair of Westwood for Melissa UltraGirl II flats with tortoise-colored bows (above left, $120). And I'm happy to report that they are really comfortable and, of course, totally waterproof, which I'm hoping will serve me well during rainy days at the runway shows.

Payless_jpg I'm also thinking about cruising by Payless. The budget shoe source has been doing collaborations with designers for several seasons now (Abaete, Alice + Olivia, and most recently Christian Siriano of "Project Runway" fame.) But it's the $34.99 Lela Rose for Payless "Mallory" suede booties (see right) that caught my eye. They are navy (so hard to find a good navy shoe), and will look great with long skirts and short dresses.

What are your cheap chic fall footwear discoveries?



Photos: Top: Phi bootie. Credit: Denise Malone. Top right: J. Crew "Colleen" flat. Credit: J. Crew. Top left: Melissa Ultragirl II. Credit: Melissa. Bottom: Payless "Mallory" bootie. Credit: Payless. 

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Paris Fashion Week: At a Dries Van Noten show, even the thunder claps

On Thursday, Belgian designer Dries Van Noten staged an impressive runway show on the steps of  Palais Brongniart in the 2nd arrondissement. As the models queued up to hit the runway, an open-sided truck carrying a DJ, turntable and massive stacks of speakers, pulled into Place de la Bourse and began blaring a dance club beat. (I'm told it was the Black Eyed Peas' "Boom Boom Pow.")

That would have been just theatrical enough for the designer who usually lets the setting and the collection speak for themselves each season, but at the last minute I was lucky enough to find myselfRage_dries1 lodged in a spot directly in front of where the models were being staged (not so luckily I was lodged between two meathead security guys).

So I did my best at capturing some cool behind the scenes footage -- pardon the jerky bits and the cameo appearances by the above-mentioned têtes de viande -- of the collection, which was chock-full of prints (many that fit the tribal vibe we've been seeing since Milan), plaids, micro-checks and pinstripes. Pants were tapered and cropped (another pervasive trend we've noticed), and the emphasis, like many other designers this season, started with the shoulders, draping, wrapping or knotting at the waist.

The soft draping fabrics were clearly the focus this time around. There were voluminous printed pocket squares spilling from micro-check trench coats, contrasting -pattern button plackets and collars on pattern-covered shirts, and geometric weaving inspired ascots paired with subtle tone- on-tone argyle pattern knits. It was at least a four-pattern pileup (Van Noten apparently sourced the textiles from mills in six different countries).

At the end of the final runway walk, as the designer came offstage from his bow, a giant thunder clap boomed around us and the crowd whooped and applauded all the harder. Not a bad endorsement, if you can get it.

Thankfully you don't need to take my word for it, check out the video below. Dries Van Noten is in a white shirt and khaki-colored pants with a lanyard around his neck. Even if you're not interested in the whole video, watch from about 8:43.

-- Adam Tschorn in Paris

More photos from the Dries Van Noten show

More Paris Fashion Week coverage | Photos

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Photo credit: Jonas Gustavsson


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