LFW: JOHN ROCHA S/S 2014

John Rocha is going to get a lot of praise for his spring/summer 2014 collection, with plenty of good reasons. The silhouettes are more feminine than anything we’ve yet seen at Sommerset House this season. The floral touches, from scattered red petals over a white gown to delicately soft prints, are impeccable. The crocheted structure of his evening gowns is a work of art. Those are ultimately the qualities that will send people rushing to stores as soon as the pieces are available next spring.

But what are they talking about right now? Those hats! These immense objects, present from the first look, are amazing pieces of lattice work architecture constructed from twisted organza piping. The brims on some are so very large that they require string connecting the bill to the cap in order to keep them from falling into the model’s face. Dramatic. Awe-inspiring. Totally John Rocha.

Now, let’s get back to the clothes. Rocha starts with ivory organza, initially in layers, but increasingly in single pieces, letting the dresses and separates breathe with their sheerness. There’s a great deal of sheer in this collection, which might present some challenges in certain geographies. A camisole might resolve the issue for some of the looks, but it would be distracting under the lace pieces.

Delicate floral prints on A-line dresses elicited gasps as they passed. The craftsmanship in these pieces is amazing as they seem to almost float down the runway. Gold applique flowers on black lace presented a more sleek and structured look that was equally beautiful but with a totally different aesthetic.

Of course, this is John Rocha, so there was plenty of crocheted lace especially with the black gowns. Each piece coming down the runway was more detailed, more intricate, and quite possibly more sheer than the one before it.

One departure from all the delicate work was a couple of jackets and one dress with raw, frayed edges. The jackets work especially well, providing a stark contrast to the soft, sheer, chiffon beneath them.

John Rocha has a set of sure-fire hits on his hands. This is an amazing collection destined to provide lasting value to thousands of wardrobes. If you’re in the US, you can purchase John Rocha at modewalk.com.

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