Ceremonial and subtle, Creatures of the Wind played on Freemasonry for AW16.
With this season’s Creatures of the Wind collection shown in the Masonic Hall of New York City, it wasn’t hard to guess the designers had fraternity on the brain. The Hall is one of Manhattan’s hallowed gathering places for Freemasons – the secretive male-only organization whose recognizable square-and-compass emblem is associated with rituals dating to the 16th century. Servers offered goji berry tea as guests were ushered through a hallway flanked by glass cabinets full of artifacts: ceremonial tassels and inscribed porcelain vessels, even a Bible with gold-edged pages.
Mistresses for Masters
Past myriad portraits of well-decorated “Masters”, massive wooden doors housed an auditorium with vast gilded ceilings. Against this backdrop, the first model descended ceremoniously down steps into the scarlet-carpeted pit. She wore a triangular knee-scraping dress out of suit-like fabric, layered over a collared white dress shirt with long slitted sleeves: a picture of softened masculinity. Subsequent looks fell on a varied spectrum – Beetlejuice stripes on liquidy silk mingled with black lace, with several dresses in a stiff patent leather. Black and grey were the predominate tones, interspersed with red, royal blue, and mustard yellow.
Sealed with Silver
Despite lacking the obvious theme of previous seasons, the collection offered continuity in the form of silver jewellery: earrings like Newton’s balls, and silver triangle pendants inspired perhaps by the Freemason symbol. Various coats were sprinkled with silver studded embellishments (a few abstracted flowers, but nothing too feminine), while leather boots and booties were approximately the standard. Altogether a little bit stern, a little bit soft – an offering as diverse as any secret brotherhood.
Photographer: Gabriela Celeste
Words: R.J. Hernandez