The hype surrounding Raf Simon’s first collection for Calvin Klein was always going to be greater than the actual show.
Calvin Klein, although commercial and identifiable, has been lacking a determined brand distinctiveness recently, giving a new designer the freedom to embrace a new style direction. Nothing can really go wrong.
The invitations set the pace and introduced the theme for the show. Guests were sent a black and white bandana with the note:
Unity, inclusion, hope and acceptance. Join us at Calvin Klein in wearing the white bandana #tiedtogether
Unsurprising, the amount of people actually wearing their bandana on the FROW was minimal. A fantastic show of unity from fashion’s elite!
Guests were settled in to a Sterling Ruby art installation, which consisted of some fabric hanging down from the ceiling. To me, it looked more like an old, run-down sweatshop, which could have been the aim when you find out that it represents America’s consumption waste and the industrial decline of America’s overblown brand of idealism.
The show opened with a Calvin Klein jeans-esque model (young, long brown hair, ‘girl next door’) wearing a western inspired crisp blue shirt with big chest pockets and a defined collar, with bright fuscia trousers and metal-tipped cowboy boots. Shortly after, we were presented with models in see-through, nipple baring tops or long plastic Macintosh’s: not what I had expected to see but what I’m sure will be instantaneously accepted being the brain child of ‘King Raf’.
Sticking to Calvin Klein’s roots, we were presented with some beautiful grey tailoring (something out of the 90’s), as well as a plethora of denim (obviously).
My personal favourite, although a bit bizarre and not at all in line with the brand identity, was the variation of feather, partly see-through cocktail dresses.
All in all, an interesting show.
With the support and following that this designer has acquired over the years, it will be hard to put a foot wrong in the fashion world and I’m sure the journalists will always write in his favour. I’m still hoping for bigger and better things with his follow up collection- I need my to Raf/Calvin hopes and dreams to be fulfilled.
One last thing that must be said regarding the live streaming of the show- it was phenomenal! The usual catwalk shot would be followed by a slow motion of each look, meaning that it was a lot easier to notice the details. Very smart, very useful, very organised. Big up the CK digital team.
Link to the collection: http://www.vogue.com/fashion-shows/fall-2017-ready-to-wear/calvin-klein-collection#collection