Thursday, February 23, 2012

Y-3 Autumn/Winter 2012-13

For Autumn/Winter 2012, Y-3 treks through the steppes of Central Asia, blending tradition and modernity for a fusion of styles and shapes inspired by nomadic culture. The collection was presented at New York Fashion Week and Y-3 took the audience on a wild and rugged journey from the future to the past, all in the essence of designer Yohji Yamamoto. Y-3 explored the ways in which ancient nomadic tribes combine elements of traditional, ethnic dress with contemporary sport clothing—a look no doubt influenced by the presence of Western wanderers visiting the region. The result was an inspired take on winterwear, combining the futuristic sport style of adidas with a romantic vision: long, dramatic wool coats, sumptuous shearling jackets, nubby fleece knits, and fierce leopard prints. The collection found its origins in the idea of a nomadic existence and the very basic human need for protection, comfort, and beauty. To wit, the clothing emphasized texture, color, and silhouette, from chunky fleece knit sweaters and oversize plush shorts to bold tones of claret and jade to billowing capes, coats, and ponchos. As always, Y-3 placed an emphasis on modularity, featuring zippered lapels on jackets, removable felt collars and cuffs on shirts, and Velcro coat pockets that can be shifted around at will. Channeling a spiritual elegance, Y-3 deftly combined products of technology (like a breakthrough W-181 heat-trapping fabric once used by NASA) with the details of ethnic dress (like the vivid Ikat patterns running along the hem of a jacket). For women, this meant shawl-collar cardigan-robes with leopard collars; short and voluminous matelassé-quilted miniskirts; chic wool flannel jackets covered in a magnified animal print; long black parkas with waists tightly sculpted to resemble a corset; and vintage-inspired car coats inset with pieces of leather and ribbed knit. Many shirts, jackets, and sweaters featured elongated sleeves and rounded shoulders, emphasizing the dramatic draped silhouette. For men, Y-3 showed a series of sweeping black wool coats—again, a Yamamoto signature—trimmed in leopard-print faux ponyhair. Other men’s highlights included voluminous fisherman’s pants with a corseted lacing at the waist; twill suit jackets with built-in black leather vests; and, as in women’s, a series of deliciously sumptuous fleece jackets and shorts in black, white, and leopard-print trimmed in bright orange bungee cord. Y-3’s footwear built on the collection’s clash of modern and natural, offering sculpted booties draped in gray suede for women and tough-looking combat boots with built-in convertible suede legwarmers for men. And the classic adidas shell-toe shoe was adapted in a “flame” motif in a range of colorways for both women and men. “There is poetry and elegance to the way nomads dress,” Yamamoto said. “I want to capture that feeling and make it modern.”