Fall/Winter 2008 Fur Runway Report
March 2008, Los Angeles, CA
Contact: Keith Kaplan Fur Information Council of America 323-782-1700 [email protected]
The Fur Runway Report Fall/Winter 2008- www.fur.org is your ultimate resource for fur fashion updates
Fall/Winter 2008 New York Fashion Week was ushered in by atmospheric grey clouds and a soft rain which cast a hush over the bright lights of the city. Nothing however, could dampen the spirits in the tents, enlivened by exciting new fur designs which reflected both the vitality and the diversity of this luxury textile. Designers worked fur into new shapes and weights that showed both the versatility and the uniqueness of this precious luxury fabrication and highlighted its importance in the designer runway collections.
In designer’s hands, this season’s fur took on the guise of the sophisticated lady, from soignée and sexy to ladylike and frankly feminine, all with more than a hint of élan and allure. The J. Mendel runway collection offered the ultimate in elegance, with looks that included a bateau neck chestnut-dyed chinchilla coat dress with cropped sleeves . At the Oscar de la Renta presentation, the designer reinvented ladylike sophistication with beautifully cut shapes and extraordinary fabrications, such as the bell-shaped black swakara embroidered coat threaded in metallic. These collections brimmed with opulence and new ideas that their socialite-and star clientele will love.
For Fall/Winter 2008, fur designs took modern shapes and styles, integrating fur with other precious fabrications or melding two or three furs together to reveal the best of contemporary fur design. At Dennis Basso, he scored big with his first runway look, a trapeze shaped collarless coat with ¾ sleeves in creamy alligator with horizontally worked Russian sable. Isaac Mizrahi’s maxi-length “rag fur” coat, a dramatic mix of several different furs including fox, mink, and fisher, revealed his playfulness and unique understanding of the limitless possibilities of fur in modern design.
New casual fur styles also emerged, notably the fur vest, shown in every style from the bolero to coat-length, sheared to long-haired, and evening-elegant to dressed down. The vest, a signature piece in the Carolina Herrera collection, was shown in a variety of looks from an equestrian style vest in quilted cotton and dyed long haired beaver to a textured vest mixing swakara and fox. Badgley Mischka delivered a cropped mini-style vest in black lamb with gold washed fox. At Luca Luca, Luca Orlandi unveiled a cropped-sleeve, sheared mink standup-collar tunic in a pretty violet, a standout in his collection. Sumptuous sweaters also showcased the creative possibilities of fur as seen in Badgley Mischka’s sleeveless black beaver and sheared mink top or Sean John’s pale grey sheared mink and cashmere v-neck cardigan.
Designers continued to channel the past in this season’s collections with the ‘20s, ‘50s, and early ‘60s and ‘70s as their key sources of inspiration. Michael Kors’ runway presentation, a ‘50s Hitchcock inspired collection, conveyed chic sophistication and restrained glamour. Draped on the shoulders of the models, both his camel mink coat and an ultra-luxe espresso sable coat were reminiscent of the wardrobe of Hitchcock’s leading heroines. At Rubin Singer, the sophistication of the Jazz Age was evident in the fitted grey broadtail coat with standup chinchilla collar and beautifully shaped sleeves. Milly by Michelle Smith pulled her inspiration from the 50’s with a blonde buff retro processed mink chubbie. At Venexiana, Kati Stern’s sweeping honey colored Saga mink wrap coat with oversized shawl color and snake cinched waist induced images of the golden era of the Silver Screen.
Grey tones and warm neutrals emerged as key color stories with mink, fox, chinchilla and sable leading this season’s fur story. Blue iris mink, a favorite across many designer collections this season, made a bold statement at the Carmen Marc Valvo presentation in a steel grey reversible blue iris mink coat worked vertically with an oversized convertible collar. Catherine Malandrino showed her artistry in fur by pleating the sleeves to finish her sheared blue iris mink coat. At Carlos Miele a belted grey patchwork mink coat with oversized fox collar expressed a contemporary sensibility. Color made a comeback on the runway and furs followed suite, showing up in unexpected emerald, sapphire, amethyst and violet tones. Peter Som showed versatility in strong color palettes at both his individual designer collection with ombre tones in a plum collarless mink coat with ¾ sleeves, and subsequently as creative director at Bill Blass with an electric blue dyed silver fox vest.
Fur accessories once again figured prominently on the Fall/Winter 2008 runways with fur millinery, scarves, stoles and wraps. The fur stole was the perfect topper to the soft tweed coats or wool blazers at Michael Kors. Kati Stern’s glamorous dyed fox wrap added a luxurious touch to her raspberry sequined gown for Venexiana. At Sean John, designer P. Diddy took texture to a new level integrating fur, knit and python in an intricately twisted oversized muffler. Hats were often the finishing touch in styles that ranged from casually stylish to richly elegant. At Zang Toi, Mongolian lamb trapper hats were worn with everything from rustic outerwear to evening gowns. Doo Ri’s shapely mink toque matched her elegant, sculptural collection. And at Oscar de la Renta a knit hat with golden sable epitomized his ultra-luxe style. But the most coveted accessory this season might well be J. Mendel’s lavish fur earmuffs with crystal and feather embellishments.
As Fall/Winter Fashion Week 2008 came to a close, it was abundantly clear that fur was an essential element in almost every fashion collection. The presentations were all about stylish, chic fashion and the important fur looks that finish them. From the return of powerful, sexy looks to fur vests, new colorations and innovative accessories designers hit a high note featuring fur in all forms. Fall/Winter 2008 confirmed that the great American designers are at the forefront of fur fashion.
For the most comprehensive presentation of the exciting fur fashions from the top American designer collections visit www.fur.org where you will find downloadable, publishable images easily accessible by designer listing.