As the Autumn/Winter 2014 collections unveiled during the twentieth edition of Amsterdam Fashion Week oscillated between the technically proficient and conceptually accomplished designs by Mattijs and Tony Cohen and the politically-infused creations by Aziz Bekkaoui or Francisco van Benthum, the show that stood out for all the right reasons was the one that unveiled MaryMe-JimmyPaul’s riotous creations.
The eccentric Dutch label produced another enthralling presentation for a collection where, textured materials and fabrics such as padded leather, fake furs, feathers and oversized knits came in metallic finishes and an array of bright colours were used to create looks that interrogated fashion by exaggerating elements of what, on the surface, were ordinary clothes. Successful examples of this approach included biker jackets that had their dimensions extended in different angularities, jackets that lost their original shape and became oversized by adding numerous feathers, and 1950s-inspired skirts infused with extra volume created by cleverly cutting and layering thick wools.
At a time when fashion designers are under pressure from investors excessively concerned with business profitability, MaryMe-JimmyPaul’s celebration of fashion as an elevating art form reminds us that it’s only because of talented designers’ intelligence, creativity and hard work that the global landscapes of fashion are richer and more meaningful. And for that reason alone, their runway show on 25 January 2014 might have been the most important event of the latest edition of Amsterdam Fashion Week.