Alexander Wang shirt, J. Crew pants, Sigerson Morrison flats, necklace from India
Don't worry, no 8-page essays on the implications of the idea of "Baroque minimalism" today, just a cover up for the minimalist wear I've been relegated to during this Hurricane/Tropical Storm/Ruin-er of My Fall Outfits Nicole induced rainy weather. Although....maybe just a few thoughts on the idea of baroque minimalism that Miuccia Prada played with in the latest S/S 2011 Prada collection (and which seems like an apt overarching theme to Milan Fashion Week). Some say the collection was kooky. I love that it doesn't make sense on a literal level. It seems that the Baroque element-- in both the Prada show in particular and the Milan shows generally--is not so much literal (although Prada's gilded monkeys would beg to differ) as it is a mood or accessory to enhance and complement a clean, minimalist base. That piece of Baroque attitude is what tinges the minimalist outfit with much-needed human (or in Prada's case, pre-human) warmth. A bit of primal indulgence for the shiny and loud and gaudy can go a long way in transforming otherwise severe silhouettes into something joyous and invigorating. But only just a bit of Baroque, lest you find yourself suffocating from the weight of all the gilt. (sorry! couldn't let that pun go). Alongside Prada, Raf Simons' collection for Jil Sander seemed to be the twin spirit of this Baroque minimalism--exaggerated shapes in punchy colors added life to otherwise austere lines. A delicate balancing act between tradition and modernity; seriousness and frivolity; volume and subtlety; new and familiar-a great indication of how one might dress for the future.
Well, that's all fine and dandy to talk about, but for runways looks that aren't really translatable to non-abstract life as-are, what does it mean for real-life dressing? Keep the lines of the base simple, and clean, but play with strong colors, texture, and embellishment (ruffles, monkeys, curlicues, what have you)!
Prada S/S 2011 (all pictures via vogue.com):
Jil Sander S/S 2011: