By the time you read this post, someone will have tried to convince you that there is a new minimalism. Whoever this person is, they are a liar and should not be trusted in any capacity. Minimalism never went away and the new minimalism looks suspiciously like the old version; case in point, this season when every other designer is attempting homage to the days when Helmut Lang, Calvin Klein and Jil Sander were actually helming their respective labels. All this millennial redux isn’t a bad thing as our appetite for simple, elegant clothes is never quite sated, but for those of who lived through the decade, the nostalgia can feel just a little too early. After all, there are women who still have their original camel coats tucked safely in storage, do they really need the new Celine variant?

The answer is of course, yes. There is still something appealing about the K.I.S.S. ethos of pared down design, be it fashion, art or even in the stripped down designs of publications like Gentlewoman and Dapper Dan. Whether or not women are ready dress like austere models seen on catwalks, they retain their interest in simplicity. Beneath the severity of minimalism lies a utilitarian spirit; Stella McCartney’s faux leather separates may look sleek, but they are also cut to flatter, accented by functional flat shoes and in season defying neutrals – same goes for the slouchy new offerings at Bottega, or even Philo’s heralded creations. Is it any wonder then that we keep hearing about the rebirth of minimalism season after season? The spin might be getting old, but the clothes keep working.

Balenciaga F/W 2010

Celine in Vogue Nippon, July 2010
John McLaughlin,

Bottega Veneta Resort 2011
Bottega Veneta, Bazaar June/July 2010

Kitty Kraus, Untitled 2006

Stella McCartney F/W 2010

Margiela in Vogue US, 2001

Jil Sander S/S 2002

*Intro image | The Row F/W 2010 by Jak & Jil

Advertisements