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Vivienne Tam: soft futurism

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Written by Daniel P Dykes

Under a spotlight each model takes to the catwalk. From afar the all dark tonality of the pieces they wear must look plain, but up close the fabrication, rich and textured, is far more obvious. So too, I suspect, are the futuristic cuts that make up the opening pieces in Vivienne Tam's fall 2011 showing at New York fashion week. In these pieces the fabric is layered and sculpted around the neck and shoulders, each one giving the impression that the model may have just stepped onto the catwalk from some future period of time. Not the dystopian future that typically inspires fashion, but a refined one, each piece maintaining a sense of femininity. It's a shame, then, that this luxurious detailing may be lost on those not in a prime viewing position.

It's not all dark clothing against a dark catwalk however. Whites and greys present a pop, doubly so on this catwalk. These two colours and their variants are mixed through the collection's simple pieces, in its pieces that are perfectly inline with the crochet clothing trend, and are additionally layered under sheers and laces. Also to be seen is the odd red piece and winter prints, but it's collection's dresses with a Far Eastern, Kimono-like tilt that really stand out. They're impressive for both their detail and movement, a fact made more prominent by the spotlight falling upon the models whose frames they are draped across.

vivienne tam fall 2011

Of it all, however, the collection's cutaway elements are what really stand out. Lavilshly applied as detail to pieces, be it as shoulder caps or full sleeves, it's a motif carried through into the collection's footwear. Each model, from as best as I could tell, took to the catwalk in a pair of boots of black or plum colouring, each pair featuring cutaway sections up the shin.

All our pictures from Vivienne Tam's autumn (fall) / winter 2011 / 2012 catwalk can be seen by clicking on the thumbnails below and clicking through the gallery.

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