Frankly it’s the designers I’m looking out for. As if they don’t already have enough on their plates, what with the fall/winter and spring/summer collections to design, plus that elusive “resort” collection they’ll most likely never have time to wear. I imagine it’s frustrating to then have the added pressure of designing one more full collection for a season that literally does not exist. And yet they do! Sweet heavens, they do. And the results can mesmerize.
Below, a round-up of 2015’s best pre-fall collections.
Suno — the apex of prints — does not fall short with their pre-fall collection. Not in their prints, nor in their slight innovations in design and fabric. It’s rare that we see Suno venture into the knitwear realm, yet they do so with their pre-fall 2015 collection with ease. I’m talking about the luxe-looking ribbed knit sweaters — reminiscent of Céline and Marc Jacobs’ fall/winter 2014 collections — that peer out from underneath sophisticated dresses of boxy silhouettes. And the turtleneck motif they got going on — the kind of perfectly simple turtlenecks you’d mourn the loss of, worn underneath their typically-patterned garments.
Max Osterweis launched Suno after “witnessing post-election violence in Kenya,” even utilizing the talent of locals for his brand. And here, the Kenyan influences in both the patterns and the fabrics are nonetheless prominent than they were in seasons past.
2. J.W. Anderson.
If this is what pre-fall looks like then hold the phone and get me a muzzle because I’d gladly live in this imaginary season all year round. As with Suno, the Céline influences in J.W. Anderson’s pre-fall 2015 collection abound. It’s particularly Phoebe Philo’s 2012 resort collection that Jonathan Anderson seems to be channeling in his pairing of long-sleeve, oversized tunics with long gloves — rolling up the sleeves of the tunic to not only make room, but to also lessen what could otherwise be deemed stuffy or elitist.
He stays true to his baggy wide-leg trousers, and anyone with mediocre eyesight can see why. Except here he ups the ante with slits on the inner hems, giving them a slight bell-bottom while skirting any Saturday Night Fever vibes.
And dear god the high collars! Aside for one which appears to be fashioned out of either velvet or velour, the collars-turned-turtlenecks are simply extensions of his jackets that zip up to the chin. They resemble a thick choker, but with one catch: they’re not.
Belts are just about everywhere — cinching dresses, coats, or merely adorning a skirt — but what I really want to talk about is this tan fuzzy-looking bomber I really want? Which — thanks to Style.com — we now know is made of “the mohair that toy maker Steiff uses for teddy bears.”
Oh and did I mention the head-to-toe leather getups? In bright red and purple? No? Bye.
3. Proenza Schouler.
Jack and Lazaro of Proenza Schouler stick to some of their characteristic boldly-printed dresses that are a one-stop-shop to interview wear, but what I’d like to zero in on are the details of this collection that aren’t characteristically Proenza. Because it’s these I find myself drooling over: black, white, and gray plaid, reminiscent of Celine’s fall 2014 collection, is sculpted into tight long-sleeved shirts that serve as great under armor. And there’s more plaid too — plaid oversized coats worn with plaid turtlenecks, and plaid straw skin-tight boots.
Accordion pleated skirts accentuate the contrasting black and white colors. But the gold crown goes to the luxuriously-knit cable-knit dress that’s long sleeve, ankle length, form-fitting, and ends with a nice thick swath of that accordion pleat.
4. Christopher Kane.
Let me just say: AAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHH! If Christopher Kane’s Spring/Summer 2015 collection was a bit underwhelming, his pre-fall 2015 collection makes up for that entirely. Black and bright pink looks are given unique, patent leather accents (there’s even a patent leather choker for god’s sake), which transitions into folds with contrasting colors and then lace details.
He harks back to his embroidery days with bright flowers embroidered onto otherwise simple pieces — a black dress here, a navy wool overcoat there.
And the meager patent leather embellishments that remain underscore the outfits perfectly.
Finally, he ends with more geometric silhouettes and trimmings — a bandage used to cinch a dress and a fur coat give way to all-over geometric prints of bright hues.
5. Sonia Rykiel.
It’s only Julie de Libran’s second collection for Sonia Rykiel, but she’s already far surpassed any of the brand’s seasons under the creative direction of Geraldo de Conceiaco.
If the pre-fall shows have taught us anything it’s that the ’70s look exceptionally good on; and for a brand with close ties to this particular decade, Sonia Rykiel’s pre-fall collection is unsurprisingly spot-on. Flared, denim pants with unfinished hems are paired with trenches of various styles up top; thick, knit tights come in autumn-like shades; and shearling makes sophisticated cameos as well. The Jane Birkin influence here is real — a fact that was made abundantly clear with the slouchy berets.