>>Alright, I'll just get it out of the way. I am slightly creeped out by the oddly angled cat and the drawn on eyebrows which remind me of the ones that get painted onto Chinese Opera female singers (I used to have recurring nightmares about their faces for some reason…). The banana, I can forgive seeing as we're supposedly going to have a banana shortage problem on our hands.
All of those minor niggles (pointed out only because it's 8am in the moring and sleep hasn't been removed from my eyes) swept aside and we have Kirsty Ward's S/S 11 collection debut that makes the spiel about her turning from jewellery design to ready to wear utterly unconvincing when the actual clothes are these structured entities that play with opacity and palette so beautifully. The truth is that Kirsty Ward did study womenswear design and graduated in 2008 from Central Saint Martins MA. After a one and a half year stint at Alberta Ferretti, she teamed up with David Longshaw to design his jewellery which was what got her noticed at the competition ITS9. The mixture of mechanical and African or South American tribal elements in her jewellery makes for positive visual assault what with the unexpected combination of materials that she uses. This is further emphasised in her jewellery for this S/S 11 collection here when the pastel palette of mint green and peach as well as flashes of red are thrown in.
Whilst Ward did start the collection off by designing the jewellery off, this does not mean that the clothes became an afterthought, a mere backdrop to showcase her jewellery. On the contrary, she presents some of the most interesting sheer/opaque formulae of the season – sheer double layered dresses, cut-out shirts, underskirts that peek out of solid dresses or coats – all very often worked into an interlocking formation that is also aided by the stiffened organza material that makes everything stand away from the body. On top of that, comes the sparkle, though tinsel and beading only serve to add a sprinkling of embellishment as opposed to being a full-on glitterfest, which also manages not to jostle with the jewellery too much. I don't particularly need to explain why it's all so very appealing to me I guess – sheer, pastels, tinsel and enough interesting deets to keep me occupied . Taking another cue from the lookbook, the notion that I might be able to slip on my bulking headphones (my Urbanears white ones are serving me well…) to carry about my daily mundane routine with a seemingly decadent combo of a sheer shirt shimmying beading and a frothy peachy skirt is comfort to me indeed…
To acknowledge my slowness in getting Kirsty's work out there, I direct you to Topshop Inside Out's lengthy interview with the lovely Kirsty to find out more about this striking debut as well as to Fashion 156's blog post about her pending A/W 11 collection which involves old ladies and chairs, as part of their excellent series of tracking young London designers before they present their A/W 11 collections in Februrary.