Who would have ever thought that Belgium would lead the international fashion business? Paris, New York, Milan, even London, yet, but The Low Countries? Yes it is happening. I am talking Raf Simons and Dries van Noten, two wonderboys from our neighbouring country.
Van Noten is a neverending story. Each and every collection is fresh, modern and at the same time classical. The same is true of Raf Simons, at this point for Dior. They are totally different, yet one of a kind. Both are inspired by modern art, present clean lines and colour in their designs, traditional and equally ahead of our times. Everybody watches them.
For his last fall 2013 collection Van Noten was inspired by Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers dancing cheek to cheek in Top Hat (Tim Blanks for style.com), the classic embodiments of masculinity and feminity. He said it with feathers. Otrich feathers. And layers. Fringe dresses over pantalons, under colberts, over blouses. Oversized coats, over pulls and skirts over pantalons. Coats over tops, over skirts, over pants. Masculine bigsoled brogues and fur coats. Soft pink pastels and dark sheer silhouettes. White men shirts on delicate feather pants.
Nonchalant yet elegant. Masculine and feminine. Avant-gardistic as always.