Collections and catwalk shows dreamt up and staged by Dean and Dan Caten have long been one of the highlights of the season.
Always edgy, highly desirable, usually a combination of hyper-smart and relaxed, and often offering a new take on denim... Somehow, they never disappoint, but this collection of theirs could not have been farther from relaxed.
Inspired by all things sweet and dark, manga, film noire, science and horror, the Catens' very own "Madame Jekyll and Mistress Hyde" is never afraid to experiment.
Accordingly, the clothes are one hundred percent lady, razor-sharp, worldly, showgirl or outright dominatrix, sporting the scariest heels* ever seen. The spectacle went along the same line as the menswear show in January: arrivals at a dark and swishy dungeon disco soirée.
In this universe, the lady wears drama full on, in the form of razor-sharp and body conscious suits, dark but feminine dresses and coats in leather and wool, accessorised with PVC, fur and feathers, corset detailing and zips everywhere. The colour code was black on red for night, grey on milk chocolate for day, with red lips. She is no stranger to shirt dresses though, only hers is made of black leather.
The girl, on the other hand, slightly more demure, opts for gothic cobweb-detail pieces and short dresses, mostly in plain black and grey. Here, bandeau dresses and asymmetric sleeves made for an ideal blank canvas of skin, with coloured tattoos of arteries and veins creeping up the arms**.
Besides all the ladylike darkness, there is room for a little masculinity, suits with ankle length trousers, white shirts and sparkly ties and scarves - the same look Dean and Dan assumed for the occasion. Last came the jewel in the crown, the showgirl, wearing long skirts and dresses with full slits, corset top halves embellished with feathers, stones on the front or a sparkly bone structure at the back.
This autumn winter collection was a surprise as far as the style and the pieces were concerned, but the thing with genius is, one needs to be prepared for anything. After all, the edge and desirability we have learnt to expect of DSquared2 was undeniably there, and that, along with another potentially gothic winter season, is here to stay.
View Dean & Dan's mood poetry and self-review, entitled