A Nod to Process at Vionnet

A Nod to Process at Vionnet | The Cutting Class. Vionnet, SS14, Demi-Couture, Paris.

Vionnet, SS14, Demi-Couture, Paris.

In his first collection working on Demi-Couture at Vionnet, Hussein Chalayan created a range of garments that worked with pleating and layers of sheer fabrics often embellished with cords and metal hardware. There was also a nod to the pattern making process with fabric prints that resembled pattern making paper.

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Lacing, Quilting & Tucks at Dior

Lacing, Quilting and Tucks at Christian Dior | The Cutting Class. Christian Dior, AW14, Paris.

Christian Dior, AW14, Paris.

With clear, bright colours and clever silhouettes the Autumn-Winter 2014 collection for Christian Dior featured new twists on quilting, sneaker style lacing and a variety of uses of tucks to control fullness, shaping and volume.

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Clever Pattern Making Details at Kenzo

Clever Pattern Making Details at Kenzo | The Cutting Class. Kenzo, AW14, Paris.

Kenzo, AW14, Paris.

Hidden amongst the clashing colours and prints of the Kenzo collection for Autumn-Winter 2014, there were some clever pattern making details including crisscrossed lapels and panels that folded back on themselves to create peplums and collars.

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Woven Panels and Bursting Ruffles at Comme des Garçons

Woven Panels and Bursting Ruffles at Comme des Garçons | The Cutting Class. Comme des Garçons, SS14, Paris.

Comme des Garçons, SS14, Paris.

For the Spring-Summer 2014 collection from Comme des Garçons there were familiar techniques such as padding and overblown ruffles in monochrome and candy pink. There were also some looks that used a cage-like structure to emphasise the silhouette, and some sweeping panels that wove in and out to create interlocking details.

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Contrast Binding and Organza Layering at Prada

Contrast Binding and Organza Layering at Prada | The Cutting Class. Prada, AW14, Milan.

Prada, AW14, Milan.

Each season Miuccia’s Prada collection sits within a specific colour palette, within a certain range of fabrics, plays with a certain range of design details and usually poses some new styling questions as well.

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Fairytale Fabrics at Alexander McQueen

Fairytale Fabrics at Alexander McQueen | The Cutting Class. Alexander McQueen, AW14, Paris.

Alexander McQueen, AW14, Paris.

Treading that fine line between fashion and costume, the Alexander McQueen collections always use fabrics and detailing in a way that seems otherworldly. For Autumn-Winter 2014, Sarah Burton’s collection involved embellishment and textile work that blurred the lines between fabric, feathers and fur.

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9 Collections in 1 at Christopher Kane

9 Collections in 1 at Christopher Kane | The Cutting Class. Christopher Kane, AW14, London.

Christopher Kane, AW14, London.

There are few designers who serve up as many ideas in a single collection as Christopher Kane and this was especially true for the Autumn-Winter 2014 collection which featured and combined everything from ruffles and gathering, to crystals, laser cut laces, floral motifs, clever pattern cutting, pages of organza and a play off between nylon and fur.

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Separating Pattern from Cut at Proenza Schouler

Separating Pattern from Cut at Proenza Schouler | The Cutting Class. Proenza Schouler, AW14, New York.

Proenza Schouler, AW14, New York.

Viewing catwalk collections digitally can be restrictive when it comes to collections which are highly patterned, as the colours and patterns can obscure the panels and darts used within the garments. This was true for the Proenza Schouler collection for Autumn-Winter 2014, which provided a good case for separating the silhouettes from the fabrics.

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Star Wars and Smocking at Rodarte

Star Wars and Smocking at Rodarte | The Cutting Class. Rodarte, AW14, New York.

Rodarte, AW14, New York.

From a construction perspective, the Rodarte collections tend to revive or reference the sort of techniques you’d expect to see in a dusty craft magazine whether it’s patchwork and quilting, or in the case of Autumn-Winter 2014, smocking and crochet. In a way it is by adopting these homely, retro construction techniques that helps to give depth to the awkward nostalgia of their collections.

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Thermal Colour Change Fabrics at Alexander Wang

Thermal Colour Change at Alexander Wang | The Cutting Class. Alexander Wang, AW14, New York.

Alexander Wang, AW14, New York.

For some designers the true cycle of innovation each season seems to be firmly rooted in the textiles and materials that they use, which can help to produce unique collections that distinguishes their work from other designers and also helps to ensure that the collections are less easily copied. For the Alexander Wang collection for Autumn-Winter 2014, some silhouettes were built around heat sensitive fabrics, which were laser cut, or cleverly woven and knitted so that neon colours glowed out of black garments.

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Modern Ruffles at Dries Van Noten

Modern Ruffles at Dries Van Noten | The Cutting Class. Dries Van Noten, SS14, Paris.

Dries Van Noten, SS14, Paris.

The ruffle is one of those sewing embellishments that can struggle to look contemporary, too often falling into the trap of looking prissy or dated. For his Spring-Summer 2014 collection, Dries Van Noten was able to use ruffles without compromising on the usual slouchy cool of his collections.

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Ethereal Fabrics at Dior Couture

Ethereal Fabrics at Dior Couture | The Cutting Class. Christian Dior, Couture, SS14, Paris.

Christian Dior, Haute Couture, SS14, Paris.

The Spring-Summer 2014 Couture collection from Dior was filled with intricate textiles that often centred around layering, cutouts and exquisite embellishment. Sheer fabrics with cutouts were often layered over tiny flower shaped sequins, or cutouts were folded back to reveal clusters of tiny beaded flowers.

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Trompe-l’oeil Latex at Viktor and Rolf

Trompe-l'oeil Latex at Viktor and Rolf | The Cutting Class. Viktor and Rolf, Couture, SS14.

Viktor and Rolf, Couture, SS14, Paris.

Lightweight latex tattooed with trompe-l’œil ruffles, bows and swallows was the feature of the recent Viktor and Rolf couture collection, which was modelled by members of the Dutch National Ballet. The latex in tones of nudes, beiges, browns and pinks worked perfectly to blend with the skin tones of the dancers, blurring the line between latex skin and actual body.

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Textured Layering at Haider Ackermann

Textured Layering at Haider Ackermann | The Cutting Class. Haider Ackermann, AW14, Menswear.

Haider Ackermann, Menswear, AW14, Paris.

The recent menswear collection from designer Haider Ackermann, featured layers of textured fabrics on vests, jackets, overcoats and cropped trousers.

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Simulated Patchwork Details at Preen

Simulated Patchwork Details at Preen | The Cutting Class. Preen, SS14, Image 1.

Preen, SS14, London.

The Preen collection for Spring-Summer 2014 featured geometric textiles created in sheer, foil and opaque textures, and sometimes layered with delicate florals. While the textiles often invoked the feeling of patchwork, the effect sometimes appeared to actually be created through printing and quilting rather than through individually patchworked pieces.

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