Reem Acra Fall 2013: Keep glam and carry on

Have the trend forecasters spied the apocalypse in our future? A distinct pall of apprehension hangs over New York Fashion Week Fall/Winter 2013. It’s more than just the sober hues and heavy fabrics one expects to find in a fall collection. It’s a tinge of malaise, brought on, one speculates, by the constraints of a still-sluggish luxury market, and by the winds of social and political unrest that continue to agitate around the world.

Typically in tough times, fashion recourses to austerity: hemlines fall, silhouettes deflate, fabrics wipe off the smirk. But Reem Acra takes a different tack. Within the strictures of a focused palette (black, white, red), the designer presents options for the woman whose preoccupations for the planet are no excuse not to primp.

There’s a certain defiance to the ostentation on display here. A goat-hair coat over a black silk dress isn’t just fluffy; it’s conspicuously fulsome in red and black ombre. A bomber jacket gets gussied up with a fox-fur cowl over suede jodhpurs, channeling an alternate Amelia Earhart sitting for her post-flight Vogue interview. The twists and drapes of otherwise simple sheath dresses and kimono coats warrant instructions. Mesh insets and cutouts on clean-lined pieces create trompe l’oeils worthy of triple takes.

Ballgowns are quivering meringues of excess, all tulle skirts and strategically embroidered mesh bodices. A braving of the elements, a baring of proud chests to the perils of the unknown. Taken together with the models’ long gloves and red lips, they sum up nicely a certain bravura: if we must grin and bear, at least let’s look damn great doing it.

Photo Gallery: Reem Acra Fall 2013
all photos by Kwai Chan / Meniscus Magazine