Saturday, February 14, 2009

Yigal Azrouel Fall 2009

A peak or a valley in fashion’s increasingly pathetic celebrity obsession? Depends upon one’s viewpoint. From this end, the presence of Ashley Dupré, the world’s most famous has-been hooker, suggested that Yigal Azrouël couldn’t get star power of a more reputable sort to grace his front row, somebody like Chris Brown, perhaps. Why he went with a tabloid toots is curious, because it only made her, rather than his excellent collection, the focus. Azrouël, like many of his peers, is fixated on the hip downtown type who tends toward stovepipe pants and strong shoulders. He had that angle covered with legging-like cotton and leather pants and romantic washed-silk blouses done with a level of sophistication that sets his clothes apart. Indeed, the voluminous top/skinny bottom silhouette often skews young and sometimes sloppy — likewise for the short-and-tight conceit. But Azrouël managed to show both with a controlled edginess that works for women and girls — and you know there’s a difference. Colors were moody, heavy on black, gray and blue. For day, he emphasized texture with a terrific, oversize Fair Isle cardigan that flew away over stretch wool pants, as well as tough, as in a studded cropped leather jacket. As for the dresses, a painterly print on a languid silk gown didn’t flow, but a black, relaxed-Morticia version perfectly captured the “dark yet romantic” tone Azrouël meant to set.- WWD Staff

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