When guests gathered at the immaculate Jacqueline Conoir studio for their fall/winter 2012 show last Tuesday evening, they had no idea what to expect. Sure, there was the usual mix of fashion industry insiders, media, bloggers and clients chatting over drinks before the show began. Based on past precedent, they anticipated a great show filled with wearable clothes from a label known for its suiting and separates. But there was no runway to be seen and a white curtain cloaked one half of the studio. What was the "unique 'think out of the box' approach" to runway shows hinted at in the press release?
Once the crowd was seated and the lights were dimmed, guests didn't have to wait long to find out. Instead of doing a normal catwalk show, the team at Jacqueline Conoir decided to stage a real photo shoot as a fashion show. Models walked out of the wings and gathered next to canvas chairs and hot studio lights while photographers snapped away. Then they walked around in a wide semi-circle before retreating backstage. The effect was a production that felt like one part fashion show and one part art installation, an experience that was expansive yet intimate at the same time.
The show's unique staging aside, the upcoming season marks a return to 70s-inspired glamour for the Jacqueline Conoir woman. Models sported straight centre-parted hair à la Ali MacGraw in Love Story, as well as some belted wool trenches and car coats in black, plum and teal that might have had MacGraw swapping her camel topper for a new one. Subdued prints in earth tones, teal, plum and magenta adorned shift and wrap dresses. Classic suiting exhibited subtle updates in the form of lapel ruffles and prints. For the sophisticate, pieces in a trompe l'oeil black lace pattern are sure to be a winner.
It's a pleasure to see this label grow and evolve from season to season, all without losing touch of who the Jacqueline Conoir woman is. Congratulations to RozeMerie Cuevas on another lovely collection.