Despite rumours, David Dixon shows at LGFW (Video)
David Dixon kicked off last night's show - after over an hour delay and swirling twitter rumors of a possible cancellation - with a retrospective of his 16 years as a designer. While I don't begrudge anyone a proper Sweet Sixteen celebration, I wonder, did Dixon really need two? And did we all really need to be invited?
This initial part of the show was hodge-podge and overly sentimental - narrated love letters between his grandparents, old family photos, a cheesy intro video featuring an uncomfortable-looking Dixon. It was a digital scrapbook trainwreck. I'm a fan of taking runway shows to a multimedia level. I love props. And celeb cameos. But not when they distract from the real purpose of the show (the clothes, duh).
Dresses from past collections floated down the runway, the screen noting the year and theme. It was somewhat interesting to see the evolution of the David Dixon label. I just think it could have been handled in a better way. Technical glitches naturally marred the overly complicated production. The last look came out in the wrong order and was without video introduction. Too bad, because the floor-length skirt of aluminum "feathers" (SS 2010) was by far the most impressive of the bunch.
The FW11 collection finally made an appearance after 11pm, when I could sense restlessness in the room. Pieces from the "Escape to Jakarta" line were inspired by Dixon's longing for a real vacation. The first gowns, in an almost comical orange-red leopard crepe de chine, didn't wow me (and I love animal prints).The print worked, though, in smaller doses, as a blouse with an oversized necktie. The same blouse appeared in a gorgeous digital python print and later in a very wearable grey and white ikat. My office wear could use an injection of this kind.
The stand-out elements of the collection were texture and oversized detailing. Laser-cut leather, crunchy grass taffeta and furry bits beckoned to be touched. Huge bows and oversized sequins adorned cocktail dresses and gowns. Evening wear, as to be expected at David Dixon, was the star. I was smitten with a particular gown - black, with a simple cap-sleeve boat-neck bodice and a full skirt featuring leather paillettes. A glittery boiled wool swing coat took second place. Swoon.
Props to Dixon for a bold and consistent palette, although I do wish that the reds - ranging from a shimmery spicy shade to matte cool red - were a little more in sync.
While as a whole, this was perhaps not the strongest collection, a few beautiful details, touchable textures and knock-'em-dead prints went a long way to saving the show. Was it enough to placate the irritated and restless audience? I awoke to a positive stream of twitter reaction this morning. Survey says... yes.