All The Rage

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Milan Fashion Week: At Jil Sander, Raf Simons' stages of deconstruction

September 26, 2009 | 12:59 pm

Jil sander

At Jil Sander, Raf Simons took the concept of deconstruction that has been creeping into the collections this season (ripping forms apart and putting them back together in a different way), and made it entirely his own.

A clip from Michelangelo Antonioni's 1970 film "Zabriskie Point," picturing a man and a woman in an amorous outdoor romp, set the scene for clothes in various stages of deconstruction. And indeed, some pieces looked as if they could have been ripped and frayed during the throes of passion.

A white sheath with tatters for fringe; a cut-and-paste blazer with pockets standing at attention; a white mesh dress with knit panels tracing every curve -- the clothes were organic, raw, even emotional. But did they work? Yes and no.

It was refreshing to see a designer so unrestrained, letting the whole creative process hang out, as it were. But some things crossed the realm of interesting into weird (he could have used an edit).

Still, there were gems -- a black dress in double-layer organza, slit from the neck to the small of the back; a grainy, cream-colored silk tweed blazer with tattered lapels; a black pencil skirt with petal-like scraps of fabric appliqued on the hips: and a sandstone knit dress with artful oval cutouts winding around the body.

The film only heightened the experience on a steamy Milan night, as people tried to keep their eyes (and their minds) on the clothes.

--Booth Moore

Photos: Spring-Summer 2010 Jil Sander runway

All the Rage: More from Milan Fashion Week

Photo: Spring-Summer 2010 Jil Sander runway. Credit: Peter Stigter and Jonas Gustavsson / For The Times

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