Perhaps I’m not the most objective person when it comes to choosing what collections to review. The downside of running a fashion site by your own, for sure. I do tend to mostly choose collections I’m in awe of, collections that caught my attention in one way or another or collections that are distinct from the normative fashion. Mary Katrantzou Spring 2018 falls into the latter category. I appreciate when designer’s aesthetic is so distinct that you can spot their looks easily, that’s what Katrantzou often does. Katrantzou’s spring 2018 collection is no exception! See the full collection here.
Born in Greece and a graduate of Central St Martins, Katrantzou has had her own label since 2008. She is famous for her energetic colors and prints, not shying away from bold shades or statement prints. The prints in specific are what Katrantzou often get praised for, being behind several iconic looks like these shoes, these flowers or these post stamps. Another core in her collections, style-wise, are the sporty elements that are often recurring. Perhaps that’s why it’s no surprise that she’s had a collaboration with Adidas for years.
Mary Katrantzou Spring 2018
For spring 2018, Katrantzou mainly worked with four elements; bold colors, floral prints, sporty details and volume. These four elements (definitely the fire, water, earth and air of her collection) were done in different combos, ranging from a core of sports to cute day dresses. There were some elements of the 80s (what else) and more or less all looks had a youthful and bouncy vibe to them. The sporty vibe was most of the time in center with a lot of wind jackets but also wind dresses (is that even a thing?). The grecian neckline was done for some dresses, adding a structured contrast to the voluminous bottom parts.
The voluminous balloon skirts and dresses that were popular years ago, were brought back to life in this collection. Often going quite statement on the volume, sometimes with a marked waist and sometimes an A-shape. The leading word for the collection (stated by Katrantzou too); youthful.
One of my favorite ways of describing a collection where the theme is brilliant, but the individual looks are not as good, is to describe it as the “group attractiveness effect“. Mary Katrantzou spring 2018 is that sort of collection in that context. The collection, when viewed together, looks energetic, dynamic, different, fresh and exciting. It’s sportswear meeting volume, floral prints and bold colors. When viewing the specific looks though, it’s perhaps not that wearable.
As Katrantzou often works with statement pieces, it’s not easy to re-style to suit your own style either. The statement of the volume, prints and colors are there and they already have their own unique and significant touch to them. But that’s also where my love for Katrantzou lies. She always goes full statement, delivering her own vision from sketch to dress. If you don’t like it, you don’t have to show up for it. This leads to the opposite idea that the downside of making a wearable collection is that it’s often quite anonymous too. It has to suit different styles and persons. That’s where it tends to join the group of “same same but different” collections that are presented each season. Katrantzou on the other hand, she always makes unique collections that still suits her style. You can easily spot from which year a look from Mary Katrantzou is.
Does this mean that I think Katrantzou’s boldness justifies this collection? Not completely. It’s a fun collection, unique, but it’s also terribly specific where the clothes demands a lot from the wearer. There are colors to be comfortable with, prints and all the volume too, and that goes for one look. I like when designers do 80% of the work and 20% is left to the person to add their unique touch and styling. As said earlier, this collection is not an easy one to style as the clothes are THAT statement. It leads to a situation where the clothes wear the person and not the other way around.
Highs and Lows
Ironically enough, the looks I love the most are the two looks that are the exception to the collection’s overall theme. This one is absolutely brilliant and this one is not far behind either. The placement of the prints, the midi length, the color scale and the fringe statement makes for a magical combination. I also love this dress, the style of the neckline and the highly awkward color combination of grey, neon orange and yellow for the bottom part is too fun to ignore. The defined sporty looks are also quite good, being quite wearable from a silhouette perspective and more discrete than the other looks.
I’m not too fond over this gold/orange/green combination. The skirt is nowhere near flattering or interesting enough to compensate. The colors are not easy to pull off, nor the styling either. I have to be fair though and say that I love the socks and shoes combo, simple but genius. This look is not hideous, but I wouldn’t wear it either. No idea why it sort of works, but I could definitely see it on the street worn by a fashionista. The styling in this look is not the best, but I absolutely love the color combinations. I think the style of this dress is really good, but that color combo will probably make it one to pass. To be fair, that look pretty much sums up my entire experience with this collection. There’s something I love and dislike in every look and would’ve done differently. I like the idea but not the execution. I like the concept but not the lack of wearability or missed opportunity to add your own touch.
Folks! What are your thoughts on Mary Katrantzou spring 2018? Would you dare to go statement with her looks or do you prefer it subtle? Let’s chat in the comments, always love to review collections with you. Xx