It was with the intention to display its own ambition to dominate the national and international women’s fashion scene that Brazilian brand Animale decided to open its runway show for Spring/Summer 2014 with the top model Karlie Kloss. Regardless of this daring purpose, once I read that the collection was to include beautiful Bali imagery in the garments’ patterns (namely the region’s nature and cultural artefacts as observed during a visit by Priscilla Darolt, the brand’s designer), I got interested and a tad excited. However, the end result was not entirely what I envisioned: in a nutshell, the focus on the celebrity model and the haphazard choice of patterns allied to confused asymmetric cuts failed to get the collection off the sartorial ground.
Some of the beautiful patterns and luxurious fabrics clearly (and deservedly) impressed the audience that gathered in the Bienal building in São Paulo to watch the runway show that opened the 35th edition of the biggest fashion week in Latin America. However, if the abstract interpretations of Bali fauna and flora, as well as the country’s colourful masks in textured fabrics such as silk mixes and metallic leather worked with a high level of success, the juxtaposed batik patterns and gingham in dull olives and burgundy would have benefitted from some editing not only in quantity but also in the creative ingenuity that they failed to make evident. And no model, regardless of their celebrity status, beauty or professional skills would have heightened the creative dimension of Animale’s latest collection.