Dear Shaded Viewers,
though Tbilisi may still not be at the top of your mind when considering fashion, the Georgian capital — land of good food and exquisite wine — is reconfirming itself as an under-the-radar hot spot for some of the world’s best and interesting designers of the moment. Guided by the Creative Director and founder Sofia Tchkonia, a renaissance Georgian woman who made it bigger and bigger after year, Mercedes Benz Fashion Week Tbilisi showcased more than 40 shows this season. The Vetements factor is still strong among lots of the designers, who made it the “new ugly” concept totally in their chords, as well as the love for their country and memories of the Soviet period: from school uniforms (like Demna did) to pictures of the architecture of those times, from sportswear to provocative messagges. Intentionally oversize-fitting pieces and luxe proportion-pushing are some of the common factors. These are the Georgian labels that had me writing nonstop and the reasons I’ve been telling everyone that a trip to Georgia is always a good idea. Stay tuned for more.
Knitwear I love you. A mostly head to toe knitwear look intertwined with silk dresses, gowns and high-knee boots. Dolitze sisters have an incredible team of knit artisans and their collection season after season is stunning in terms of styles and craftmanship. They based their Spring collection on two romantic historical periods: the 18th century and the 1920s. Ruffles and hues of purple stand out among the bright knitwear as well as the introduction of long velvet cardigans.
Bling bling Mondrian. Known for its intricate uses of artificial leather and knitwear, this Spring Creative Director Lado Bokuchava played around the concept of gravity, layering tiers of ruffles for a futuristic but deconstructed look, injected with some artistic hints as well as for disco 80’s vibe. The brand boasts celebrity fans such as Iggy Azalea, Sky Ferreira, and Miroslava Duma.
Denim forever. Showing for the first time in this fashion week, Anouki collection surprised and enchanted with denim all-over embroidered with cotton flower motifs as well oversized T-shirts, dresses and head-to-toe striped looks. Anouki Areshidze launched her Tbilisi-based brand ANOUKI in 2013 after studying fashion design at Istituto Marangoni and Accademia del Lusso in Milan.
Sporty glam. I fell in love with the stretch leather boots. Like a second skin they were the styling accessories I couldn’t not get away with. Another big trend of the season was explored in this collection by Nicolas Grigorian: athleisure. Nothing boring like logo T-shirts and polyester attire, the designer references 1980s sportswear such as zip-up track suits and varsity stripes for his Spring 2017 collection.
Alexander Arutyunov, who established the brand in 2011, does not take to the runway quietly. Instead his statement pieces in Spring 2017 reference military and Soviet codes, with strong shoulder jackets and exaggerated oversize hoodies through a variety of historical and cultural references like the sheaf of wheat motif that adorns the denim parkas, one of his must haves, as well as being carried by the models for some of the most dramatic looks.