All Hail Prada’s Bold New Look and Direction for A/W’12

by Katie on February 24, 2012

I’ve had my love and hate affair with Prada over the years, simultaneously loving (and buying) and also dismissing some seasons with an overstated ‘uugh’ but last night Miuccia Prada showed a collection that was so forward thinking, so well constructed in intelligence and so out on a limb that this is the label and the season that catapults womenswear in a new direction.
Firstly we have the construct – a stompingly serious, neo Modernist but Retro influenced army of women who meant business, walked the walk of influence in altered proportions, fabric clashes and embellished and embroidery ugliness that simultaneously looked quite quite beautiful like a 21st Century futuristic Pop Art tableau of New Wave feminism.
A/W’12 has already shown us that womenswear is about the clashy clashy and not about the matchy matchy but Prada took this to new levels of intelligence and proportions as we would expect from Ms Miuccia Trailblazer. Mixes of Kandinsky’s art futurism merged with ’70s TV show ‘George & Mildred’ type Retro while layers were key: Long strict waistcoats over skirts over trousers, crop jackets and tops over wrap skirts worn Indian style over matching 3/4 length trousers with large scarab type beaded bottoms, scoop neck dresses with beaded detailing over tightly buttoned to the neck shirts over crop pants, clashing Bauhaus hexagonal patterned suits and colours paired layer on layer – all worn with confident in charge power. This was a collection for the brave and the beautiful. Ms Prada for A/W’12 is all about being seen and not heard. She is the statement.
Large belts with beaded buckles were key to holding everything together as was the enormous beaded detailing that brought to mind ’20s glamour merged with rival brand Marni’s use boldness when pairing large beads with pattern in unlikely scenarios. The awkward shoes only added to the swaggering gaucheness, even causing Miuccia herself to trip when taking her final bow at the end of the show.
What made this season’s Prada so clever was a nod to Eastern influences and the cover up. The nations with capital during this global recession are of course the Arab nations, China, India and Russia. Whether stripped down and worn solely, or styled and layered as shown, this collection bent to the will of the women demanding a new look.  Secondly, this was a collection that made resolute assertions – Prada rivalled in her power to transform traditional notions of ugliness and ‘over doing it’ into a thing of beauty making this collection top of the list for those with brains, confidence, clarity and the cash to emphasise these. 
Never fear readers, this is a courageous collection that is bound to be homaged by numerous high street chains. I can assure you, in terms of style and vision, you’ll be seeing this look in a LOT of windows next season. Woman up and be prepared to be bold.
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