Ohh, Mary…that woman just keeps on bringing it! Mary Katrantzou trotted out another winner collection for Spring 2012, rife with both the extravagant bloom of nature and the rampant excesses of humans. Her most interesting pieces located the point where the two meet to perform a weirdly unsettling dance – such as the below dress, wherein tin cans swoop in to mar a florid waterscape of brightly colored tropical fish and coral.


Mary Katrantzou, Spring 2012

I love that, like les soeurs Rodarte and her fellow Londoners Christopher Kane and Basso & Brooke,  Katrantzou is completely committed to her whimsical visions, no matter how quirky or over-the-top. Her embrace of unprecedented prints, oddball shapes and ridiculously rich color are dear to me – she pushes fashion forward, but in the most fun and delicious way. Even when her subjects are somewhat dark – as with this season’s foray into environmental concerns – she provides fodder for thought without depressing us. No, she makes us laugh and smile, and stand a little bit up on our tiptoes, like magic has just entered the room…


3 Responses to “Fishbowl”
  1. Jen Stone says:

    It’s like the surrealist era for prints in fashion leaning at times towards abstract expressionism. I am curious to know more about the printing process and to what extent the designer is involved in that, as the fabric print is such a dominating element of the overall collection. Your illustration captures the allure of Katrantzou’s use of color and dramatic use of contrast in subject in the prints, as well as the playful cut of the dress. The checkerboard background is an op art frame highlighting all of this compelling contrast while adding to the discord and bringing harmony to it simultaneously.

    • Naomi says:

      Jen, thanks so much for your thoughtful and well-written analysis – you nailed it! London is SUPER strong for prints and has been for the past 5 years or so. A number of designers, Katrantzou and Basso & Brooke most notably, have taken an extremely active role in the printing process, to the point where that element is at least as important as cut and fabric. Do take a look at Basso & Brooke as well, as they have a similar hyperreal-to-the-point-of-surreal print aesthetic. Shall we take a trip to London together my dear? :)

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  1. […] young print master’s collections as soon as they hit the runways. (Take a look back at “Fishbowl” and “The Surreal World of Mary […]

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