This spring season, Vera Wang presented a collection that was clearly hers, but from a completely new point of view. Wang presented a whole new vision of the meaning of a ready-to-wear commercial line by playing with combinations, adding and taking where it would otherwise seem unconventional. Yet, it is unmistakably the work of punk-at-heart Vera Wang.
Whoever says Vera Wang is just a bridal designer would be sorely mistaken. With her trademark black, well-tailored pieces gracing the runway, Wang has much more to offer this world than flowing white gowns. This season in particular has Wang experimenting with the limitations in the fashion industry. While her clothes individually are well-made and certainly ready to wear, their commercial appeal from the runway stance is definitely a call for the viewers to pause. In her more recent lines, she has showed her ability to cover the female body in beautiful ways, so the Vera Wang spring/summer 2016 line seems almost out of character for the time – in the best way possible.
This 66-year-old designer sends a clear message with her bold, revealing spring line. She still clearly understands the bodies of women she is designing for, and has artistically pulled apart outfits in order to send pieces down more individually. For example, a well-tailored, classic black suit coat is sent with nothing else but a bandeau top and a possible riff on tuxedo pant-inspired short shorts. This could easily have been paired with a pair of trousers she later sends down the runway for a more ready-to-wear feel, but Wang didn’t allow herself to be tied down by such expectations.
Vera Wang clearly has a distinct persona in mind here, although that person doesn’t quite exist in reality. She is evoking the idea of a woman, who lives her daily life in well-tailored clothes and leads a professional life, but has a crazier alter-ego buried underneath the layers of control. Before her show, Wang herself attested to the idea, saying she designed for “a girl who’s extremely controlling and buttoned-up, but in another life or fantasy life she becomes something else.” She clearly has achieved her goal of creating this woman, and also created an unspoken message, saying that women don’t always need to keep up a façade of normality. It is okay to let your hair down and let loose every once in a while. Powerful women can have powerful alter-egos, and there is nothing wrong with that.
All it would take is a little moving around of pieces, and adding or subtracting of pieces in some cases, and there is a perfectly ready-to-wear, commercial line here. But Vera Wang did not allow herself to be content with just sending that down the runway. She instead decided to send her message. She sent women with their hair (literally) down, mostly free of makeup and let loose in their daring outfits.
Not only did Vera Wang create an impeccably tailored line of office wear, but she also created clothing for the woman, who doesn’t want to be controlled by her professional life. There are pieces for business and pleasure in the inspiring Vera Wang spring 2016 collection, and there is so much to be learned from the statements Wang has set forth.
Photos courtesy of Vogue