LFW: SIMONE ROCHA F/W 2014

I’m sending advance notice to my editorial team at home: I want this Simone Rocha collection in front of my camera as soon as it hits the backroom at Saks this fall.

After being treated to the bright colors of Marques’ Almeida and musical production of Anya Hindmarch this morning, Simone Rocha suddenly turned things very serious and dark as she presented a Sylvia Plath influenced collection that was both dark and golden.

Braids, messy crown trios in the hair and tidy ones of gold rope on the clothes, dominated the first several looks. Working initially in all black,  the clothes themselves might come off as being a bit elegant and refined if it were not for the swatch of gold leaf models wore in the center of their foreheads. Rocha’s silhouettes are looser, more comfortable this season, with a heavy emphasis on careful folds especially in her coats and jackets.

There was a lot of chatter after the show about the line being a bit anarchistic but I think that may be projecting something onto the clothes that that is not necessarily appropriate. The gold snakeskin print on rubberized cotton is a little stiff but the look is almost couture in its style. Okay, there are those few pieces done in wrinkled pvc, giving them that trash bag look. I find that less anarchistic and more sloppy, but even there, change to a more traditional fabric and the designs themselves are impressively strong and wearable.

Ms. Rocha’s folds are complimented on several looks by the careful placement of ruffles. One has to be careful here with their terminology. There is no peplum, despite the fact that ruffles atop front pockets might resemble such; the purpose and effect are quite different. Where she plays the ruffles against the gold braids, the look is absolutely brilliant.

The latter portion of the collection comes with a touch of red tartan that, compared to the rest of the collection, comes off as a humorous nod to Ms. Rocha’s Irish upbringing. When she switches to soul-baring sheers, though, the delicate attention to detail takes over and we see what an incredible designer Simone really is. Silhouettes are slightly more fitting, cuts are careful and precise, and braid placement is meticulous. Granted, one may need to slip a chemise beneath them in public, but the looks are astonishingly beautiful.

Simone Rocha was sufficiently impressive last season. With this fall/winter collection she demonstrates tremendous growth in her craft and it is quite likely that her label could take to the skies when these pieces hit stores this fall.

And yes, John Rocha was seated front row, center, smiling and nodding in approval through the entire show. That has to be one very proud dad.

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