Haider Ackermann pulled back on the poetry and draping this season in favor of a collection that found its strength in the cicatrization of clothing.
Backstage after being swarmed with kisses by models, Ackermann talked about failure. The idea being that when we fail at something we pull it apart and attempt to piece whatever it is — clothing, family, life— back together in a new way. "You try and repair, support and sooth," he said with feeling.
And that always leaves scars.
This was a potent line up that was more structured and graphically impactful than anything the designer has done before. It is no small thing to succeed at making animal prints, checker board patterns and zigzagging tweeds work together. Fold in some punky, pleated skirts and leather pants and the outcome could have been a disastrous hodgepodge. But Ackermann was able to stitch it all up beautifully, not only via the violent grace of the leitmotif stitchery that gave the trousers, fitted jackets and tops a Frankensteinain artistry, but in the controlled construction and proportions of each silhouette.
This show was equally as evocative in those pieces that never needed "mending". One black and white tuxedo jumpsuit was sleek perfection. Alternatively, a red velvet suit speckled with gold made for a different sort of dramatic evening option. Both of which could be worn with the regal elegance of one of Ackermann's long, black wool coats. Garments the designer crafted to wrap across the body and close with a single button at the left, that he balanced by a lone pocket on the right.
This collection was a sartorial salve for the fashion world. Go ahead and slather it on.