Subtlety is the name of the game for Damir Doma this season. The designer who studies so carefully the interplay between light and shadow brings that to bear in numerous ways throughout this spring/summer 2015 collection, and there are several aspects that are sufficiently dramatic in their own right. Yet, it is the quiet elements, the textures and stitching, that host the greatest beauty and artistry for this season. One can almost hear the music flowing through some of these pieces as they come down the runway and the tune they play is very sweet.
I fear that the casual observer may glance over this collection and fail to appreciate everything Damir has built into these clothes. Let’s start with the fact his opening ensembles use denim. Denim is definitely earning its place as a luxury fabric this season, which is something that’s butting up against some old biases for a lot of people. In Damir’s hands, though, one can appreciate how he takes the casual nature of the fabric and works it into something more refined. When he places the denim against suede, the effect is both visually and emotionally impressive. Cut carefully, stitched with incredible detail, enhanced without being overly stressed, Doma brings denim into a luxury state it hasn’t known.
Then, pay attention to what he does with large metal grommets. Sometimes they are decorative interruptions in texture and other times they have more practical use, such as being the point through which straps pass in the construction of jumpers. They also become tie points on jackets and tops, providing a more elegant fastening than just a button or zipper. The glint of the metal plays off the matte of the fabric and catches one’s attention. Once again, taking a very ordinary element, Doma has created something elaborate and elegant.
What one doesn’t see in this collection is any satisfaction with his previous status quo. Damir pushes himself with fewer monochrome looks, a wider array of fabrics, and more fitted and carefully tailored silhouettes. One finds sporty touches of mesh among more formal dress stylings and surprisingly delicate fabrics put to work in more fun-oriented styling. Metallic silver pleats play hard against brown textures and orange panels are almost shocking against the more sedate tones of blue and gray.
This is a collection for which photographs are simply not sufficient. One needs to see these pieces up close and personal, to touch the fabrics and experience the textures for themselves. The tendency to merely glance over the collection and dismiss it as just another ready-to-wear line must be avoided. There is more to like in this season’s Damir Doma collection than ever, but the real beauty is in the details. Take the time and look carefully. Be impressed.
Photo credit: Regis Colin Berthelier