The Row Autumn Winter 2013: The Olsen Sisters Are Quite The Conundrum

12 February 2013

They are aloof and mysterious, yet like to sit in the audience of their own runway show and mingle with the fashion 'hoi polloi'; they are diminuitive in stature yet their designs and cuts favour the statuesque; and they are young, spritely, and the epitome of downtown cool, whilst their clothes ooze an uptown elegance & sophistication that might traditionally appeal to a more 'mature' customer (with the clothing allowance to match). But, perhaps, therein lies the secret of their success.

In a celebrity-saturated branding jungle, they could almost be perceived as 'Anti-Brand', which bodes well for a label that prides itself on being for fashion insiders, or lovers of chic understatement. They even make a point of using virtually unknown models in their runway shows, when they certainly have the wherewithall to parade a bevy of supermodels if they so wished.

Their Autumn Winter 2013 collection was certainly no exception. With its monochromatic palette, elongated silhouettes, clever cuts, and luxurious fabrications - it was certainly true to the 'anti-brand' they have cleverly created. Beautifully tailored topcoats worn over pencil thin trousers or elegantly asymmetric, drapey ankle-length skirts were fashioned out of black wools and silks. Tunic dresses - some worn over trousers - lightened the load, being made out of creamy, dreamy jacquards and brocades. A personal favorite was an oversized Arran sweater with exaggerated shoulders accompanying a silky pair of pyjama-like pants that would have served well for 'old movie night' on the sofa but begged to be worn to a sophisticated soiree.

There was nothing revolutionary on offer - but that's just the point. Why scream, when you can whisper and still be heard with such resounding clarity.

by Andrew Holden in New York


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