Some of you may be familiar with the Theatre de la Mode concept that came out in post-war Paris where couturiers designed outfits for 1:3 scale mannequins made out of wire because fabric was scarce at the time.
And so, the concept comes around again in the new millennium as a new label Theatre de la Mode is trying to constantly grasp new ways of presenting their collections, just as Robert Ricci (son of Nina Ricci) did successfully decades ago. Sara Flamm and Christopher Kelly debuted their AW08-9 collection ‘Willows’ at London Fashion Week with a fully scalable/wearable collection of womenswear and menswear presented on bespoke figurines, as creatures of the woodland.
They could so easily have gone down the route of fanciful costumes on dolls that will have girls coo-ing and demanding full sets to adorn their French boudoirs, but Flamm and Kelly have used the concept of mininature mannequins but applied high-end casualwear and modern tailoring to them instead. So that the clothes transcend the novelty value of ‘Oh look, it’s a doll’ and become clothes that are actually wearable.
They have taken ideas from traditional Jewish costumes with salvaged fabrics to create the clothes so underneath the rustic looking pieces, there’s embellishment in the finishings. It’s a clash of rough n’ ready and tailored n’ smart.
Of course, for SS09, selling their clothes will have to be part of Theatre de la Mode’s agenda so real size models will be used. But for now, I’ll stick to hoping these outfits below will do a ‘Honey, I blew up the kid’ magic trick.