Due to an extremely strong economy, hardly any unemployment and high salaries, the downward economic spiral has long been ignored by the Danes. However, a mere month before Fashion Week, the daily print press started reporting on economic uncertainties and limited funds for some of the largest fashion-houses. And sure enough….when Day, Baum und Pferdgarten and Bitte Kai Rand didn’t appear on the show-schedule the Danes were presented with the evidence of the economic crisis reaching Denmark.
Conformist high-street chains such as Vero Moda and Vila were given prime time slots in the week’s program and that, along with the fact that Noir, Camilla Stærk and Peter Jensen decided to skip the week, put a certain damper on the expectations for the week’s proceedings. The international bloggers and fashion-journalists didn’t seem to mind though and showed up in numerous numbers to see what Copenhagen had to offer.
Copenhagen Fashion Week debutante and much-hyped Louise Amstrup opened the somewhat bleak week and her collection was one of the more interesting and refreshing of the first day.
Louise Amstrup, dubbed it-designer of the moment by several Danish fashion magazines, was trained by giants such as Alexander McQueen and Jonathan Saunders and her work does have a promising look. The designer has previously shown her own brand at London Fashion Week, and the international vibe as well as the previous references to director David Lynch’s aesthetics was very present. Amstrups collection featured abstract prints, padded and over-size shoulders and sharply tailored jackets, all with a dark and gloomy rock’n’roll feeling to it. A tassled mink-fur vest was perhaps the most exciting piece but the interjection of bold contrasting colors and softer fabrics seemed random. Amstrup should stick to what she does best, namely raw materials, dark colors and minimalistic cuts.
Elis Gug was next on the first day of Fashion Week, and compared to last year’s installation-show in an Italian inspired delicate garden this regular show with models walking down the runway seemed almost boring.
Elise Gug did remain true to her Italian aesthetics with light chiffon, loose shapes, drapings and flowy fabrics all in muted colors and blacks. Elise Gug residing in Northern Italy, designs clothes for self-confident yet fragile women.
Alfred Hitchcocks “The Birds” besieged The City Hall for the highlight-show of day one. Rützou had desperate crows croaking as the models strode out on the catwalk and that set the mood for the dark and edgy collection. This was undoubtedly a surprising and bold move from the well-established designer’s staple look of whimsical prints, light fabrics and feminine cuts towards a more tailored look. The A/W 09 collection was one of the designer’s best yet with a darker, simpler and goth-like feeling to it.
The prints, created by talented graphic-artist Sara Houmann, were ethereal, out-of-this-world and almost seemed ghost-like with branches and birds as the main-theme. The collection featured boxy tuxedo jackets,below the knee-skirts, drop-crotch pants, tassle-detailing and an array of sequin jackets. The most memorable, although not so innovative, pieces were a Mondrian-inspired dress and a trashy-dress obviously influenced by Rodarte. Rützou, known for her wearable clothes, has long been stuck in the same rut but with this collection she has made it clear that she is to count on for the future, but is she innovative enough to last internationally?