Acne showed some interesting shapes and proportions along with the unique idea of having a quilted outerpiece worn under a jacket! It seems that lots of designers were doing short jackets in this season of the suit...
One can always depend on Rei Kawakubo of Comme des Garçons to present something totally insane and totally unwearable. This '12-'13 F-W collection featured an elusive cross-dressing, Goth, schoolgirl theme with a bit of French court millinery thrown in to keep us off balance (as if we needed to be any more off balance with this collection). The result is peculiar and compelling. The brocade printed over a classic tartan has an almost lace effect.
Dries van Noten, one of the original Antwerp Six, continues to create interesting collections. This one, inspired by a highly unlikely pairing of Frank Zappa and Oscar Wilde (?) featured graphic quotes from Wilde with psychedelic prints. Watch the video from Style.com to see the creation of the "art wall" behind the models.
Iceberg's '12-'13 FW collection came to us through Charlie Chaplin and Buster Keaton, as evidenced by the hats and suspenders on the models, not to mention that minimalist outline of Chaplin in gold on the tee shirt below. The gears on the back wall of the runway reference the Chaplin film "Modern Times." This reminds me very much of the Chaplin collection John Galliano did for SS '12, seen here.
Issey Miyake's '12-'13 FW collection was mildly interesting, but of note was a faded pattern on suits and pointy, geometric jackets.
Junya Watanabe is another designer who loves a theme and this collection seemed to be an homage to lumberjacks in Carhartt's. I like the tailored approach to work wear as well as the leather patchwork suits. I seem to be smitten with the model in orange suspenders. Anyone know who this is?
Maison Martin Margiela took the re-use/recycle ethos to heart and created coats from Monoprix bags as well as black trash bags!
Jean Paul Gaultier showed a '12-'13 FW collection that featured suits and pieces in a brick pattern as well as silhouettes that evoked the early years of the twentieth century. There is something a little "Boardwalk Empire" about it all... but of course we would not expect to see a gangster in a skirt. Only for JPG.
Now here we go again with the Hundredth Monkey/ zeitgeist idea... not only did Gaultier use a brick print, but so did Moschino! Coincidence? Something in the air?
And finally, Walter Van Bierendonck, who is wildly entertaining, created a collection that kind of terrifies me. Using the idea of African masks mixed with leather masks from bondage/S&M culture, he presented a candy-colored world of fetish, playing off the usage of the word as both an African statue containing magic and a sexual fixation. Models wore rubber waders, rubber masks, and rubber padlocks as accessories on necklaces and canes which ended up looking like tribal or voudoun staffs of power... fascinating and scary!
And finally, I need to share a really wild runway show even though the clothing was not remarkable. Umit Benan, whose designs I do appreciate, came up with an extreme military theme this season, with pieces that look like he raided Fidel Castro's closet. If I want that, I will go to the local Army-Navy Surplus store. But the show! WOW! Naked soldiers showering, men getting tattooed live on stage, Army men hanging out... what a theatrical tableau! Yowsa!