When Fashion Imitates Life ... Imitation of Christ SS2012

Imitation of Christ is a) one of the hardest to find brands at most fashion retailers around the world and b) often throws a show with a touch of drama (thanks to the founder’s previous day job — an actor). 

A brief recap to what Tara Subkoff presented for spring/summer 2011 last September: At last year’s Fashion Week, Subkoff took her guests to a garden party filled with svelte bodies all draped in classic — and heavenly — whitewashed Victorian-like getups.

This year, similar mood seems to prevail for the spring/summer 2012 collection, but cueing the styles from the Great Depression era circa 1929.  

Well, if the term “Great Depression” does not ring a bell, then I will put it this way — looks that are very much favoured by the likes of Zooey Deschanel, that sugary sweet and blonde lead singer from The Band Perry and yes, Katy Perry (during her pre-Sex Bomb era, which is right now.)

Just yesterday, guests and fashion observers gathered at the W Union Square to witness an almost-real wedding reception thrown by Subkoff herself. Champagne and cigars for the guests, flower petals strewn along the runway that leads to a makeshift aisle with flowered arch and a real priest. 

While all the guests were enjoying the art-imitates-art moment with, of course, the free-flowing bubblies and cigars, the models began to strut in bias cut dresses, flapper dresses, fringed skirted dress, plethora of floral prints and laces paired with sheer chiffons. Much of the pieces were peppered with floral appliqués and intricate beadworks that according to Subkoff, took hundreds of working hours to make. 

So authentic they were — especially the silhouettes, the materials and the colours — one could simply pass them off as genuine vintage. Furthermore, it can be rest assured that Subkoff could have done her homework very well. The working palette, on the other hand, is mainly composed of pastel hues such as beige, peach, baby pink, mint and a handful of blacks and whites.

Yet, the most breathtaking piece that successfully stole everyone’s attention during the show was the one worn by model Lydia Hearst. Hearst, who played the bride at the start of show, walked down the aisle in a stunning yet sheer white corseted lace wedding dress with bias-cut chiffon peplum on the waist and sprinkles of small floral appliqués. 

Complete with the inevitable veil, she and her ‘partner’ recited their “I do” vows in front of the priest, the other models and the guests. Of course, a staged romantic kiss ensued after they were declared as “man and wife” by the priest.

Tara Subkoff’s Imitation of Christ spring/summer 2012 collection will be available in selected fashion retailers next year. 

*Photos by Filippo Fior/GoRunway.com/Style.com 


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