Atelier Gustavolins Couture Fall Winter 2013 Paris
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Atelier Gustavolins Couture Fall Winter 2013 Paris

Brazilian architect turned designer Gustavo Lins followed up on his recent menswear presentation with that of his fall 2013 Atelier Gustavolins couture. In true architectural manner, it isn’t so much the places where the fabric is, as the places from which it has been subtracted that provide the clearest picture of his work. For the season, he referenced architect Tadao Ando whose work “has always impressed [him]. This architecture that leaves space to emptiness, the role of light.”

True to form, Lins selected exquisite tactile materials to recreate a collection articulated around a desire for simplicity in shape and function. In filigree, the base elements of deconstructed kimonos could be felt, rather than properly seen in a thick belt mimicking an obi, or in the neck embracing collar of a rather minimal dress. The couturier has long loved this Japanese garment and knows it well enough to play with it. Add a notch and it becomes a twist on the popped collar, dress it up in black satin and you have a tuxedo effect to complement an ink-painted open coat.

Billed as Collection 021 & Pièces d’exception, it was a little hard to follow where his rework of the luxury weekly wardrobe ended and where his “heart of couture” began. Ultimately, the mélange of beautiful craftsmanship and this low-key approach were closer to artisanship than it was to couture in its current definition. While this isn’t necessarily a bad thing, it muddles his lines a tad.

- Lily Templeton