Foreplay. An emotional and physical act of intimacy between two… or more people to create desire. The anticipation, the tantalization visually and emotionally is enough to make eyes roll back into the head. And on February 4, 2016, one designer left us lingering, wanting… needing… what was presented before us via the art of tease [on the runway] done with just enough speed and exploration through the introduction of new details mixed with the familiar.
For Fall/Winter 2016, John Elliott takes us on a darker, more erotic ride. With a nod to nightclubs in Berlin and spending days and nights in their dark corners (super fun and not for the squares), Elliott pulls you in, and all you can do is scream [in your mind]. Entitled “Over The Line,” a white, maroon, black and ecru color palette were seen on French terry, leather patchwork or flannels. In particular, many of the fabrics that were used were very textured and were quite stimulating to the eye.
The friction and uncertainty of what’s to come was Elliott’s canvas. Elliott tickles us with a feather at first, sending a series of all white looks down the runway. But now bend over, shut the f*ck up and do as Elliott says: quickly, things get dark, and Elliott has you at his submission in the form of heavyweight bombers, shorts and pants. Have no fear however, he wants you to stay, and uses more familiar techniques (as seen in his 2 prior collections) such as his military references and relaxed silhouettes i.e.: t-shirts were unstructured and worn with knit leggings.
Making sure each encounter is different so you don’t get too comfortable, Elliott pushes the boundaries of the audience’s senses by making things that will surprise his cult-like following. Anticipation builds. A good example was a parachute jacket worn over a shearling hoodie and an elongated t. At Deux Hommes, we were especially keen on a deep purple bomber style jacket with horizontal zipper details on each upper arm with suspender belt details on the chest pockets. Reign on utilitarianism. The lust-worthy item was a leather sweater that featured pebbled leather and leather patches with silver zippers. He makes you want it; he makes your tongue wag with anticipation.
The devil was indeed in the details, forcing the audience to really take in this twisted tale: Elliott used sashiko, a stitching technique that is used to repair kimonos. Another item of note was the introduction to John Elliott footwear which included high-tops as well as combat boots with strips of leather. In short, Elliott had us throw out our inhibitions and certainly aroused us greatly, leaving us panting. We are at your mercy, John.