In The Netherlands, graduate season is in full swing. On 14 June, the fourth year students of the HKU Academy, Utrecht presented their final collections. ARTS THREAD’s Jainy Gans reports from the front row.
Lieke Ewald’s BAM collection certainly opened the show with a ‘BAM’! With a big puff of smoke the first models made their entrance, wrapped in a dazzling black-and-white print with massive wigs in red, blue and black on their heads.
Inge Muijselaar’s Disproportionate collection was equally colourful and cartoonish. Muijselaar’s pop art-inspired designs incorporate voluminous woolen collars, sparkly detailing and a colour scheme which brings Mondriaan back to live, were supposed to bring out the kid in everybody.
Unexpected Expectations, the eclectic collection by Sabine Staartjes, is also full of fun. Using fluorescent threads, Staartjes gives new meaning to the classic pied de poule weave, whilst golden accessories, from necklaces, bracelets to shoe strings, complete her look.
Knitwear was a big theme in the Nostoolalgia collection by Ilse Oosterhoff, who proved that Tibetan mountain goats are still very much in fashion while Fenja Ikonomou played with knitwear in a much more delicate way. She moulded hundreds of black, grey and plum shaded threads closely around the body, achieving a beautiful flow of colour.
The highlight of the night was the gorgeous avant-garde collection by Judith van Vliet. She managed to transform something so common as a plain business suit – in her eyes the perfect example of uniformity in the West – into something new, feminine, and perhaps even what we call: haute couture. Van Vliet concealed the black-and-white suit of her first model with a five tier-layered dress of stiff wickerwork in yellow shades. It was only a matter of time before a bird of trimmed wickerwork tied to a sleeve followed.
Designers such as Ulrika Menig, Dagmar Lindeijer and Marian Versluis, who could easily snap up a job at any Scandinavian brand such as COS due to their simplistic silhouettes, love for highlighting pale colours with attention to quirky details.
Photo credits: Peter Stigter