Denis Gagnon’s strengths are many and they were all on display for his Spring 2012 collection at LG Fashion Week. Gagnon is a Canadian designer who truly gets it (whatever ‘it’ is) and his shows are always a delight. While many runway shows this season at LGFW were under-styled and suffered from a lack of production Gagnon’s show was a complete runway experience. He presented a cohesive collection that carried his creative concept through from start to photo finish.
The presentation started with the abstract short fashion film, Nuits Nouvelles, that featured the Montreal-based designer in a log cabin looking through the mist at two seemingly lost women – literally and figuratively – frolicking in the woods. While the 10-minute film was dark and brooding the collection and the presentation of it, was anything but. Smiling models danced, twirled and skipped happily down the runway and playfully interacted with the audience. Smiling models? A rarity at shows and presentations.
The collection itself, called “Denise in the Garden”, played with the classic tuxedo and was also a lesson in opposites. The skilled mixmaster – who mixed zippers, fringe and stripes for his Fall 2011 collection – paired the unexpected together for harmonious results. Laura Ashley floral prints and soft silk in champagne were shown alongside bondage-esque straps and leather slitted cone bras. Razor sharp tailoring was highlighted by gingham, polka dots and that ubiquitous floral print in a single outfit. Another rarity made an appearance on the Gagnon runway: very few models were shoehorned into sky-high heels and instead wore sporty white leather and black patent leather brogues.
And the show was sealed with a kiss, a same-sex-yin-yang-opposites-attract-wedded-bliss kiss.
Photos courtesy of the Fashion Design Council of Canada
Standout pieces that will be on every fashion enthusiasts list this spring include the black silk sleeveless tuxedo dress, the black leather jacket with jersey sleeves that looks a lot like a chic straightjacket and the all-floral everything jacket, shirt and pants outfit.