Dear Shaded Viewers,
One may think of Switzerland as a rather safe and pragmatic land, it nevertheless has innovative and relevant voices when it comes to fashion design, as evidenced within the last show powered by HEAD in Geneva. The school is known internationally for the quality of its teaching and how it nurtures young fashion graduates who often incorporate prestigious houses after graduation. Recent alumni, such as Mikael Vilchez Wiegandt or Vanessa Schindler, have in fact created their niche, launching their own brands and showcasing them globally. This year, the best MA collections had a visionary edge, and made us reflect on the values of craftsmanship and the codes of fashion itself. I was impressed with Eva Verwicht’s MA presentation, an ode to the power of accessories and how we love to fetishize such objects over and over, giving them special powers and properties. The designer’s pieces pushed the boundaries of traditional accessory design to include organic -and slightly bizarre- shapes, as well as luxurious detailing. Handed out elegantly by models wearing the same overalls, her accessories took on a Godlike presence, underlining the long-lasting appeal of commodity worship. Emma Bruschi -whose MA collection amazed the entire jury headed by Rushemy Butter and Lisi Herrebrugh this year- was inspired by forgotten techniques and materials, such as straw, glass, natural leather and iron. If embroidery and crochet were some of Bruschi’s favorite ways to go back to the delights of ancient craftsmanship, she nevertheless kept the silhouette contemporary and desirable, drawing on sportswear elements. She walked away with the greatly sought after Mercedes-Benz Master Prize and will be able to present her work during the next edition of Who’s Next or Première Classe in Paris.