Vaquera: Waiting in the wings for the party to come
This season, fashion is wavering over what to propose for fall/ winter 2021; swathes of sequins for the post-lockdown partygoers or variations on slouching athleisure for the less optimistic. Vaquera, however, has managed to concisely crystallise this balance of anticipation and uncertainty for Fall 2021, as the label holds its breath for a collective return to the stage.
Get ready for the party - but comfortably - was the label's message this season, referencing 1980s-inflected performancewear and transforming the codes of lockdown dressing - the inescapable demand for comfort, underwear-as-outerwear - into an assortment fusing protective shapes with Lurex; leather and sparkle; an effective expression of hesitant optimism.
Its exaggerated silhouettes created as much of an entrance as they did inviting cocoons, from puff-sleeved electric blue sequinned leotards, to oversized sweaters with trailing sleeves and generously ruffled pouf party dresses. Elsewhere, lingerie crept in to outwear looks, slinky satin slips and silky bustiers layered over sweaters. Whisper-thin bralettes offset the new tough-girl-chic leather jackets and matching wide, swaggering pants with metal hardware, injecting a hint of sensuality and fragility into these nighttime ensembles.
But for all its sharp buckles, body-hugging lace and glitter, this collection remained a gentle one, with soft-sheen matelassé finding its way into roomy overcoats and voluminous skirts, and the bulk of the looks anchored in soft leather ballet flats. Easy-to-wear, loose-shaped knitwear still made an appearance, as did casual printed T-shirts (bearing the text, 'Runway Star').
Vaquera is usually a house that can be counted to visually distil the zeitgeist. If this collection can tell us anything, it's that though we're clamouring for excitement, we might be hoping for a soft reentry back into the world.
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