In November I was invited to the Forward PR press day. This was an eclectic mix of brands and designers that included the fabulous Lowie and the beautiful Autour d’un Point collection from Jasper Garvida. But perhaps the most innovative, unusual collection on display was that from Fashion Fringe 2010 winner Corrie Nielsen, Arbiter Elegantiarum – a judge or authority in matters of taste.
Corrie’s Spring/Summer collection has its inspiration in both the darkly gothic beauty of The Picture of Dorian Gray, and the intricate Japanese pleating and folding associated with Origami. . The collection had a masculine basis, with Victorian men’s dress a key feature – tailored waistcoats and trousers, blouses that button up to the neck and then tie with a foppish bow, androgynous, but in the finest, almost sheer fabrics. The standout frock-coat evokes images of gothic horror stories of the 1890s, a sweeping statement piece that is utterly modern due to the front drape detail that creates an opening that reveals an expanse of leg that would’ve shocked Oscar Wilde.
Colours are kept to a simple palette, black and white are prevalent, whilst there are hints of coffee and Chartreuse to add occasional splashes of colour.The chartreuse is shown to its best advantage by the Japanese style suit that seems designed to be worn by Lady Gaga – a piece that shows classic elegance and modern innovation in one beautiful design.
With Kelly Rowland wearing Corrie Nielsen on the last series of the X Factor, and stars such as Emilia Fox sitting front row at London Fashion Week, it seems the future is bright for Corrie. With awards season around the corner I am hoping and praying that Tilda Swinton or Angela Riseborough show off these designs on a red carpet. They are innovative and totally unique – works of fashion art.
Up close – Corrie Nielsen