Safety First- A remake of collections of old

Top Czech Designers coddle safety and shy away from bold

There are many moments in life when playing it safe is the best course of action, these mainly involve issues of great importance like buying a house, investing all of your money into an aggressive stock option, or choosing the best hair color- trust me that one can turn bad quickly- but the fashion industry is no such place to play it safe all of the time. Sure, most of your line should be “safe”; but safe doesn’t mean boring, safe can mean updates of cuts, new fabrics, while meticulously changing old and new. Alas three of the top designers in the Czech Republic played it safe choosing to coddle their clients and current collections rather than be bold and experimental.

Klara Nademlynska

After her successful Spring/Summer 2013 line showed during Designblok Premier Fashion Week in March expectations were high. It was nice to see that many of the design elements (long zippers, pulls, feminine A-line dresses) made their appearance back into the fall collection along with Ms. Nademlynska’s ode to the female figure. There were a few pieces that seemed to misstep and looked out-of-place; namely that of two cocktail dresses. Blue and pink lace, mesh sleeves and back, followed by large zippers gave the impression of someone wanting to cover all trends quickly- basically- it didn’t work. The collection was by no means bad, it was wearable and will retail well I am sure, but it was just a bit boring.

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Ivana Mentlova

She is the designer for the young, be-in-the-spot-light generation and at no point was that clearer than this evening. Fur, leather, lace and body conscious silhouettes were the flavour of the day for celebrity favorite Ivana Mentlova. She knows what her clients want and sticks to it only rarely leaving the confides of her workable silhouettes to add some dimension, normally through the use of a more vivid color. When Mentlova did step out of the box it was with emerald-green coats or deep ruby. It was a beautiful collection mixing both exotic skins and fur, but again, a change in silhouettes would have been nice to see- it will still sell anyway.

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There was a familiarity between Tatiana’s f/w12 and f/w13, that was easy to recognize. Perhaps, it was the repetition of color or the cuts that make their way onto every line season after season. Suicide for any label is the repetition of an idea. Sure it can be ‘updated’ or ideas can ‘progress’ forward but staying stationary will look tired, and season after season I am starting to get tired. Blacks, charcoal greys, vibrant reds all repeated from previous seasons as did A-line coats, shift dresses, and the favorite blouson dress. A white sheath with “punk” inspiration was a much-needed  fresh update as were coats with a snow blowing pattern of felted wool.  A red ball gown with an extended train appeared to be designed for young Clara of the Nutcracker just before she opens her presents and felt odd and out-of-place next to long A-line gown with mesh. Tatiana is a talented designer, but I hope for s/s14, she pushes the envelope slightly more.

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