Ready-to-wear clothes with a touch of eclecticism or, in other words, “Utilitarian Leisure” pieces: that’s how the Thailand-born American designer described his 3.1Phillip Lim pre-fall 2016 collection, the eccentricity of which is skillfully toned down by Lim’s willingness to create pieces that every woman wants to wear on a daily basis. “We thought about the idea of ‘realness’ — how to glam her up and keep her real at the same time. But how do you bring this character to light by giving her a dose of eccentricity and immediacy?” he explained.
The answer to Lim’s rhetoric question is to be found in one of his most diversified collections, the sources of inspiration for which travel back and forward in time as well as in space. Such a potpourri of influences is very characteristic of Phillip Lim himself, whose Chinese descent and all-American upbringing make him a key figure in the wave of emerging Asian-American fashion designers.
For the 3.1 Phillip Lim pre-fall 2016 line-up, the designer’s creations celebrate both the Victorian/fin de siècle era with some equestrian-inspired influences, as well as the XXI century with athleisure-inspired styles, this way embracing the upcoming season’s most famous trends that we can’t wait to wear. Then, like a futuristic cosmonaut, Lim also travels to a not-so-distant future, filling his line-up with iridescent metallic fabrics. His Asian descents had their time to shine, too, thanks to the Nehru-inspired collar jackets and a Japanese camel twill coat with a cool pair of bomber-jacket sleeves, the exoticism of which, indeed, could help any woman to glam up her outfit.
Let’s start off with Lim’s equestrian-inspired pieces coming in earthy colors and featuring palazzo pants that clearly wink at the early 20th century British country culture. Jodhpur leggings, coats, button details as well as suede slippers and boots could be rightly considered as retro-futuristic examples of what women would have worn in a less strict way in the costume era.
Furthermore, all the equestrian-themed pieces gracefully blend in with Lim’s athleisure theme, the tailored sportswear items making workout pieces and fabrics look effortlessly chic. The athleisure style also puts an emphasis on Lim’s desire to design relaxed silhouettes that could work as stand-out pieces and easy-to-wear trans-seasonal items at the same time. In terms of this style, key pieces in the collection are his paper-bag-waist pants and long-sleeved sweatshirts.
The 3.1 Phillip Lim pre-fall 2016 collection also features loads of metallic fabrics that take next year’s futuristic trend to a whole new level, creating some 90s-inspired voluminous bomber jackets and biker jackets, A-line pleated skirts, paper-bag-waist pants, a head-to-toe Matrix-themed outfit and even some elegant trench coats and a handbag, the sleekness of which helps in making outwear lighthearted in spirit and whimsical at heart.
Last but not least, the line-up also includes clean-cut solid-colored button-down shirts matched with silk foulard-printed jumpsuits, blouses and bag-waist trousers, adorning the collection with some unconventional contrasting themes, too.