Martin Grant is an anomaly in today’s Parisian fashion scene for one very dominant reason: he casts larger size models. Okay, I didn’t get out a tape measure and check, and it certainly wasn’t anything mentioned in the designer’s notes. But, either he casts larger size models, which likely seems to be the case, or else these clothes really do make your butt look big. Let’s just go with the larger size models, shall we? I don’t mean tremendously large sized, but large enough to notice.
The good news is that Grant handles this fuller, more curvy look extremely well. While his silhouettes are often very fitted, especially through the hips, and he often dares to go high with short skirts and jumpers that expose a lot of thigh, at no point does one get the feeling that these are “plus sized” or “fat clothes.” Instead, they are well tailored looks that are intentionally sculpted for women who have a bit more of an hour-glass shape to their bodies. That we would see such a collection right smack in the middle of Paris Fashion Week is a success for women of every size.
On the color chart, this is a relatively dark set, with navy blue being the primary color across the collection. There are white and silver embellishments and a few yellow and gold pieces tossed in for contrast, but the blue holds through the length of the presentation. There are a number of stretched denim looks, a bit of poplin, but what one doesn’t miss is the patent leather, especially in skirts that are well sculpted and full.
Martin is certainly not afraid of a deep plunge that almost always ends at a belt buckle. Belts are his most frequent means of defining that delicate curve and he uses the technique well. Sleeves, where they occur, tend to start full, even a little puffy, but then taper either at the elbow or the wrist, which also helps the visual aesthetic. He gives skirts a lot of room, even letting them billow out below the waist and behind. Even here, though, he is careful enough in his construction to keep looks from being over-sized.
I do wish he had used more color. The gold lame in the finale few pieces rather comes off as cheesy, especially since two of those looks are jumpers. Seeing something brighter would endear the collection to the season a bit more, but there are still enough yellow and white highlights to prevent the collection from coming off as depressing.
Martin Grant may have created the most accessible fitted collection of the season. Women of various sizes, including the ones with larger numbers, are likely to find what Martin offers looks very good on them and that their styling is solid enough to make these valuable additions to one’s wardrobe. Beautiful clothes are always a wonderful thing.
Photo credit: Guillame Roujas