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 For her Autumn/Winter 2014  collection

(presented at Barcelona Fashion Week)

designer Natalie Capell

Natalie Capell

offered a silhouette wonderfully reminiscent

of the creations of Paul Poiret,

“Le Magnifique” as he was known in Paris

(and as “The King of Fashion” in the United States).

Then … Paul Poiret

One of the greatest designers of the twentieth century

 Paul Poiret (1879 – 1944)

was a fashion visionary and marketing strategist –

unconventional, radical, pioneering.

(image from examiner.com):

Poiret at work

Initially working in famous ateliers (including that of Charles Worth),

M. Poiret establishing his own concern in 1903,

revolutionised fashion design by creating a new silhouette –

one which liberated the body from constrictions

inflicted by the debilitating corset and the unnatural S-shaped contours.

M. Poiret’s creations celebrated freedom:

of movement for the wearer

of  innovation for the designer.

(image from http://www.theatreoffashion.com):

(images from http://www.metmuseum.org):

(image from victoriana.com):


Poiret evening dress, (circa 1914)

His designs of ‘body liberation’ coincided with

the first-wave of the feminist movement (beginning of the 20th C.)

(image from tchevalier.com):

which ushered in a socio/political, world-wide campaign

to improve women’s status.

Was M. Poiret a fashion innovator responding to societal change ?

Most probably so – given the genius of M. Poiret

in design and in marketability,

which reigned supreme from 1903 – 1914.

M. Poiret’s fascination with orientalist aesthetics,

ease of fit  and vibrant colours

are evident in his work.

(image from colleterie.com):

 Poiret creations, illustrated by George Barbier (1912)

He is also famously remembered for iconic pieces:

the lampshade tunic and harem trousers.

(image from collections. vam.ac.uk):

Evening dress - Sorbet

Lampshade tunic (1912), Victoria and Albert Museum – London

(image from etsy.com):

Postcard of a lady in wearing Poiret harem trousers (1910s)

Now … Natalie Capell

Ms. Capell’s  a / w 2014 collection embraces Poiret sensibilities:

column dress silhouette

fluidity of movement

gentle draping

orientalist elements

textural depth

exquisite headdress

Ms. Capell restricted palette of

dove greys, sea greens, blacks, nudes

creates a colour cohesion throughout the collection.

The dresses enjoyed delicately embroidered decolletage detailing

complemented by statement accessories:

structural hats with edged veil

and nude-coloured gloves

The models glided in soft ballerina slippers

and seemed posed while in movement,

as in couture shows of a bygone area.




Understated …

Natalie Capell, a / w  2014

The Collection

(images from http://www.080barcelonafashion.cat):

View the runway presentation

Natalie Capell,  a/w 2014