J Mendel Fall 2011

The sleek, dark creations that emerged from the J. Mendel runway were art deco inspired, with bold, crisp patterns. Designer Gilles Mendel presented a wonderfully sensual collection of streamlined gowns that did not skimp on opulence. A bleached silver fox coat was charmingly sedate with charcoal felt wool sleeves. Ditto with the black sheared mink and wool felt. This is a perfect example of how fur can translate into daywear and the contrast/balance feels right: luxury items, when dressed down becomes casually chic. And when you pair it with the menswear trend of relaxed yet structured tailoring, the effect is entirely effortless. One stunner we noticed during the show was a pink embroidered silk mousseline gown, worn with a silk scarf and thigh high mocha suede boots. The sheer romanticism was enough to make any girl swoon. Another great detail was the black tribal embroidery that rested on sheer sleeves. The delicate see-through fabric made the dark beading appear as if it were tattooed against the skin. You would think this added detail would clash with the collection, but it lent an unexpected, rebellious feel to the gowns.
— Jeanie Kwak
Photos and video by Stevyn Llewellyn
Watch the runway finale below.