The Metamorphosis of Style ... Donna Karan Pre-Fall 2011

Metamorphosis is the right word to describe the nature of Donna Karan Pre-Fall 2011 collection.

I choose the word ‘metamorphosis’ because the collection depicts a style transformation that woman undergoes – from a street savvy girl in tough as nail urban garbs to a reserved and elegant lady of the society in fluid evening ball-worthy confections.

Unlike the other Pre-Fall collections that I had reviewed earlier, Donna Karan’s Pre-Fall collection is free from retro influences, with the first part of the collection being subtly edgy and practical — qualities that are quintessential to the art of urban dressing.

The working palette is more of the actual Fall hues than pre-Fall, while a dim hint of military influence, which lends an air of chic toughness into the collection, is seen on the first half of the collection, notably on the belts, boots, jackets and fur-lapelled bomber.

Aside from the presence of plush pelts in forms of jackets and scarves, also omnipresent within the collection is the liberal use of ruching effect on some of the pieces, starting with ruched straight trousers to ruched dress with folded wide neckline.

The transition from street soldier girl to a classy lady of the manor begins with a simple ensemble of a wrap around shirt with elbow-length bell sleeves paired with a belted pencil skirt with below-the-knee hem.

If the skirt seems a bit stiff for your style, then you might as well be able to dress it up in another stylish way, which I call the Carolina Herrera way – wear the wrap around shirt with a satin ball gown in matching or tad contrasting hue instead!

In contrast, the jumpsuit, which follows suit, is immaculately tailored and free from the hints of the archetypal 70s styling. Instead of the usual billowy harem pants, the jumpsuit features straight pants that perfectly fit the legs.

Other ensembles such as belted skirt suit, creased belted blouse with wide trousers and ruffled belted blouse with matching ruched skirt are certainly to die for.

Halfway towards the last piece, the transition gets better with a range of dresses that are perfect for all occasions, such as a tight-fitting shift dress in fold effect with capped sleeves and a leather belt around the waist.

On the other hand, the evening dresses are made to fit the Grecian goddesses and boast liquid silhouette. Think of sinuous drapes; sheen surface of the silky satin fused with frothy fabrics by the twist of a knot; sensuous pleat effect and the meticulous detailing.

Donna Karan Pre-Fall 2011 collection will be available at all Donna Karan boutiques and select retailers worldwide next year.

*Photos by Robert Mitra/

Donna Karan - #01-11, Hilton Shopping Gallery - Hilton Hotel, 581 Orchard Road, Singapore 238883; Shop 133, 1st Floor, Ocean Centre, Tsim Tsa Tsui, Kowloon, Hong Kong.


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