Like A Moth To A Flame

Monday, May 9, 2011

Despite having an exceptionally busy week last week, I managed to fit in a very quick trip to Sydney to see Kate Sylvester's RAFW show of her Spring/Summer 2011 collection entitled 'Into the Light'.  As a longtime fan of hers I was really excited to see the collection, especially as it was her first big offsite show in Sydney for RAFW.  Upon receiving the invitation, I was amused to find it was in Randwick of all places.  Curiosity was running high on the delegates bus out there, but on arrival at the venue we quickly discovered it was actually a stunning choice.  An equestrian sales centre during the daytime, the Inglis Newmarket Sales Ring looking really striking with dust underfoot and blue hued up lighting, the added spookiness of a smoke machine running to enhance the atmosphere of mystery.

The show began in dramatic style with a complete blackout and Julia Nobis appearing brilliantly spotlit in the middle of the space before a rocking soundtrack began, which felt like it was straight out of a Sophia Coppola movie and fierce spotlights raced around the arena like venue.  The models walked around a circular track, much like I imagine the horses would during equestrian sales, which was quite a cool effect and mirrored the speedway idea which partly inspired the collection.

As is customary with Kate Sylvester's collections, it was accompanied by a story which explained the inspiration for the look and feel of the garments.  For 'Into The Light' Kate was interested in combining the heat, light and dirt of the speedway with the delicateness and beauty of moths, who as we know are drawn to light and dust.  The story is one of a young lady scientist who studied moths (a lepidoperist) and was drawn to the speedway at night, because that is where she could find a lot of them, as they were drawn to the giant lights.  This lovely young lady met and had a passionate affair with a handsome young speedway driver, the perfect rugged foil to her sweetness and gentility.

The collection drawn from this story is one of demure beauty, mixed with raw sexiness and fun, to create a delightful display of gorgeous colour and texture.  The speedway is referenced through a subtle flame motif, a slinky jumpsuit and flashes of bright colours, such as yellow and green.  There is a beautiful moth inspired print on feminine silk dresses and skirts and the diaphanous nature of some of the fabrics is very much like delicate wings.  Kate Sylvester really made incredible use of sublime silks, pleasing pleats, subtle draping, clever tailoring and some sexy sequins.  Appealing, wearable and so very pretty, the garments swing between ladylike and edgy, while being utterly captivating.  The feel of this show was of a good girl out for the night and misbehaving at the speedway, which was added to by the somewhat disheveled hair and smudgey, smokey make-up.

I personally loved everything about the show and garments, the presentation of it was dramatic and wonderful and really effective, you really got the sense of what Kate was trying to achieve with it and the venue complimented it all perfectly.  The looks went from sweet to sassy and back again in a way that had me excited to see what was coming next.  I quite simply adored it and cannot wait until the pieces are instore in a few months so I can see it them up close and play dress up myself.          

You can check out the amazing video for this show in it's entirety here.

Images from:

Just So Pretty x

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