Helsinki Rotterdam A/W 2013-2014 collection on the runaway.

Helsinki Rotterdam A/W 2013-2014 collection on the runaway.

Happy knitted coat

Happy knitted coat

 

 

Dress with Rotterdam Print

Dress with Rotterdam Print

New York Fashion Week in is full force. Yesterday, I got a chance to see the Ivana Helsinki Rotterdam A/W 2013-2014 collection live from the front row.

The venue, 450 studios, had exactly one working elevator and we had to line up outside for an hour. Pre-blizzard freezing wind from the Hudson River transformed my core into a rattling bowl of ice cubes and made me feel literally like a fashion victim. As soon as the show started, however, the bold prints and strong colors brought some spring back to my soul.

I have always found Paola Suhonen’s designs to be approachable, yet inventive. Some forms, such as Peter Pan collars and gathered puffy sleeves are definitely classic and familiar but pieces are often finished with little surprises. For example, the “Amber” dress had exaggerated Victorian era inspired sleeves, but the material was denim with hand made unique bleach. The same dress balanced the high neckline with upper thigh length, certainly a no-no in the puritan Victorian era.

Although, the prints had no floral cutesy, lot of the cuts and forms reminded me of a delicate bell flower, which quite nicely balanced the occasional austerity of materials. The bell flower form was especially evident with “Jessika” and other raita printed dresses.

All models wore thick tights, some of those shockingly white. It takes a special body type (that of a model?) to be able to pull that off. Luckily, come spring, you can leave your legs bare and let sun kiss them with that delicious golden color. This might help you hold off those tights a week longer? The whole show was also decisively not accessorized. I would have wanted to see perhaps some bags or jewelry. I don’t think that would have taken attention away from the strong pieces.

Unfortunately, my iPhone camera wasn’t quite up to the task, but you can see the full collection here.

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