Strong, structured pieces dominate this collection, which is something of a departure from the usual Rodarte aesthetic. Many of the other elements are there – a certain ‘girly-goth’ to the styling; an eclectic mix of fabrics, shapes, patterns and silhouettes; crazy shoes. Crazy. Shoes. With this collection I feel a more refined Rodarte emerging, without feeling a loss of their edginess. Their signature disheveled, layered looks have morphed into a cleaner, more polished layering that is graphic and precise, rather than random. The choice of wood paneling as a fabric pattern yields an astonishing array of color and texture, especially paired with the clean, graphic shapes, The injection of color in the blue ming vase pattern (the dress even looks like a vase) is a delightful contrast to the browns and golds.
At once modern and old-fashioned, this collection is an exercise in contrast. I can’t say I particularly LIKE most of the pieces in this collection – I find many of the looks to be unflattering even on the models wearing them, which bodes poorly for us regular folk, The Little House on the Prairie looks are, unlike the Spring collection, presented without irony. The cut of some of the long coats are a bit more modern and interesting, but for the most part look like costumes. The triangle motif on or around the chest, repeated throughout the collection is clumsy and in many instances feels forced. I simply don’t get the pyjama-jumpsuit thingys. The red seems to come out of nowhere, as do the drapey evening gowns, which aren’t cohesive with the rest of the collection. I think I understand where they are going with this aesthetic but I’m just not finding it as interesting or inspirational as some of their other collections.