Cape Town Fashion Week ’10: David West

Arguably one of South Africa’s most talented up-and-coming young designers, David West displayed a Spring/Summer collection full of optimism and confidence. Famous for his daring use of neoprene and other rare fabrics not usually found and used in the South African market, West continued his “Catholic Sexy “Autumn collection shapes but in fresh and exciting cotton candy and pastel colourways for this collection, titled; “How to find true love and happiness in the present day”.

The 1940’s/50’s styling and shapes felt very now with the contemporary neoprene and exposed seamed trims on wide A-line and full circle skirts, paired with tailored crisp cotton shirts, blouses and jackets.

Clever inserts of patterned gingham tonal trims and the modern take on a classic scribbled checkered blue and white print in dresses, tees, and skirts. Simple shirtdress and shift shapes along with linen khaki separates in the womens and menswear, made the smart avante guard pieces feel dandy and refined.

Little peeks of lace trim with the applied olive oil-esq laser cut collars and dress bodices, along with tonal mesh and clever little folded collar details throughout.

The palette moved from bright turquoise, soft pink, white, chambray and powder blue and khaki to pastel nudes to crisp whites, all with carefully sculptured white hats equipped with a translucent paper mache looking brightly multi-coloured paper insert that complimented the funky comic strip looking socks and doc martens.

Perhaps one of the most refreshing highlights of the show was the use of “regular people” peppered in between the models. West called upon friends with funky tattoos, and stocky sizes to model some of his looks, and it just seemed right for the classic boxy shapes.

Particularly for the less soft, candy coloured second half of the collection that included a palette of black, white, red and a bright variation on a Hawaiian print also with yellows, and greens. Crisp classic white shirts with subtle capped sleeve and collar details paired with black circle skirts and large brimmed sheer black hats, transitioned into a more 1950’s Mambo-feel, meets Gothic Chiquita Banana.

Continuing the short jacket shapes along with fishtail skirts and applied neoprene shapes, this vignette included sheer tops with padded placement and nautical stripes on boat neck tees for men.

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