Dress designer Roland Mouret styles for Banana Republic
The king of cling’s collaboration with Banana Republic is a winner, writes Alexander Fury
Alexander Fury is a fashion journalist, author and critic. He is fashion editor of the Independent, i and the Independent on Sunday newspapers and was awarded the inaugural Editorial Intelligence Award for Fashion Commentator of the Year 2014-15. He was named one of InStyle magazine's 20 most powerful people in fashion in 2015.
Thursday 07 August 2014
Roland Mouret looks a bit like Frenchified 21st- century version of Cary Grant. He could easily be the love interest in an arty European film – indeed, he’s got the sort of looks – and accent – that guarantees general release.
But instead Mouret elected to make dresses: he’s been doing so for 15 years, first in London, then New York and latterly Paris (although his HQ is in fashionable Mayfair). He’s the man responsible for the body-refining, Noughties-defining likes of the Galaxy, Moon and Titanium dresses, red carpet staples whose artfully darted descendants still populate the high-street.
Now, Mouret has decided to turn his hand to the mass-market: today his line for Banana Republic is released, a limited-edition capsule of almost 30 pieces available in select stores and online.
Everything clocks in at less than £100, despite bearing Mouret’s trademarks of precision fit, hand-draping and finicky couture details like industrial zips and bold contrasts of colour. The key fabric is Banana Republic’s own, a contour stretch they call “Sloan” which mimics the figure-flattering elastic crepes and gabardines Mouret utilises in his own label. The result are frocks that sit halfway between cocktail and corset, sucking in and reshaping the female form.
An hourglass figure is key – there’s nothing abstract or difficult about Mouret’s clothes, focussing on a trim, pinched waist and slender skirts. Besides the signature dresses (appearing in a dozen different permutations), Mouret’s collection includes separates, tailoring and accessories. “The common goal for this collection is to offer incredible fit through an assortment of hourglass silhouettes,” say Mouret, suavely and succinctly pin-pointing the enduring appeal of his aesthetic. “These pieces are multi-functional for the modern woman… making her always ready for life’s journey.”
Presumably, straight into a Banana Republic store.
The Roland Mouret for Banana Republic Collection is available now, at bananarepublic.com
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