Front Row

Ralph Lauren: His Latino-American Vision!

I may have delayed in writing my own review for this heavily influential S/S 2013 show, but it’s time to make this humble reference honoring a purely American designer who writes his own history, enriching its glorious chapters with little stories of beautiful, elegant people from all over the world. It was an exquisite pantheon of charming silhouettes, flattering colors and eye-catching elements. Ralph Lauren has always the perfect mix of continuity and surprise in his collections and this was once again his mission when he decided to draw his spring/summer 2013 inspiration from the latinos! Effortlessly right, gorgeously to-the-point, he offers new perspective to wearability and a fascination about the cosmopolitan identity of the classic American style. With his smart layering, the designer transcends the natural limits of his folk concept, elevating most of the looks into hip & classic miracles. It seems that he acts somehow like a chef of molecular gastronomy transforming his initial ingredients into a whole new experience full of heritage, timelessness and cosmopolitan spirit. He travels a lot with his mind but decodes the folk, local elements of the places he envisions in a very genuine, intuitive way – his infallible way – as one could say. Latin America or Spain are magically implied in this collection through a huge, diverse range of elements such as the frills, the flowers and the florals, the berets and the flat-topped hats, the shades of red and accents of black, the lace motifs and the crochet, the embroidered parts, the little scarfs around the neck, the shawls, the chokers, the fringes and the stripes – all belonging to the same latin tradition, rich in textures and colors. There were some amazingly simple creations like his monochrome ruffled dresses and his suits and there were some other pieces that display great amount of craftsmanship and tailoring such as the matador-inspired jackets and the creations dominated by lace, seductive transparencies and beading. In between, one could trace the keys to modern styling such the role of leather as the ‘new fabric’, the blending of unexpectedly different textures, colors and motifs, the new proportions, and overall, the creative, experimental attitude. There was great variety in pants – new and old forms – a game that brings feminine and masculine elements closer. It’s not overly androgynous, but basically an ingenious reinterpretation of what used to be masculine and feminine – a theatrical approach that doesn’t mean a great distance from everyday life and from what the super-active, elegant woman of today can wear! Ralph Lauren teaches us how we can be fabulous and down-to-earth at the same time suggesting a woman who is both tangible and unbelievable!

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