Like the shownotes, there was far too much 'stuff' in this collection. A sharp edit would have benefited both the designer and his audience.
Press notes are a funny beast. Pitch them right and they'll illuminate a collection in a way a post-show interview with a designer - shell shocked, sleep-deprived and stressed to high heaven - could never. Too often, however, they resemble a Google Translation gone awry, leaving an audience scratching their heads and wondering exactly where the process of converting inspiration to garment fell down.
There was a little bit of that sinking feeling at Jean-Pierre Braganza this season. Witness a collection of his trademark print-dissected dresses, chopped-up tailoring and slinky draped jersey. Inspired by a trip to Cornwall you say? 'Putting ideas about clothes into words should be left up to writers', Braganza says. Then launches into a diatribe about Mies Van Der Rohe, H. R. Giger and industrial rock. Devon knows how they make that lot stick together. Maybe it was Cornwall circa 1984 - both the Orwellian dystopia, and the actual year looking at the hefty shoulderline of some of Braganza's long-line jackets.
Some of it was nice: the monochrome prints were strong, maybe too strong at a time when an eye-popping print and a bit of cunning drape are an easy get-out to hide a lack of fresh ideas. Indeed, drape and tailoring were key, according to Braganza's always-copious press notes. But aren't they the building-blocks of fashion as a whole? Nothing new there. In fact, there was nothing new in this collection, an array of souped-up high-street dresses flecked with print, elongated tailoring, and a speckling of pastel hues.
Braganza evidently has a problem with length. His skirts were often far, far too short. His trousers were so long they occasionally tucked under the shoes - themselves far too high, clodhoppers on a towering platform (does anything look more passe than that). And, like the shownotes, there was far too much 'stuff' in this collection. A sharp edit would have benefited both the designer and his audience. Then again, perhaps I'm guilty of a verbose moment or two, too. Hence, let's summarise this collection in a single word. Okay.