Raf Simons dubbed his Spring collection ‘Against Nature’ - a brief title that opened up to a whole lot of ideas. A rare intellectual in the frivolous world of fashion, Simons dug deeply, as usual, into his inspiration material, but this season he split it into three branches: ‘Traveller’, ‘Transformer’ and ‘Transporter’. The first section, featuring fascinating hybrids of black suiting and soft, printed plisse dresses, was the strongest. The architectural cuttings – criss-cross fronts, fresh use of negative space and new cross-pollinated shapes - demonstrated Simons’ knack for realising complex concepts with his technical prowess. Also exceptional were the gorgeous knit skirts and dresses featuring asymmetrical fans of fine pleating, or the men's shirtdresses with organic silhouettes and provocative peepholes across shoulders and backs. If the collection erred in any way, it was only in its ambitious pastiche of ideas on the runway. By the time the parade had finished, Simons had touched on ticker tape bondage, party streamer-esque flap constructions on lantern dresses, cropped jackets with military details, ice blue trapeze-shaped couture coats and a finale of metallic ball gowns. Each one of these ensembles possessed enough depth to warrant a fashion show of its own. Simons is clearly a man with no shortage of passion. And can that ever be a bad thing?
Photography: Jason Lloyd-Evans; Writer: JJ Martin