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fashion: feature

Lisboa's fashion jackpot
Lisboa's fashion jackpot

Twenty-nine designers showcased their collections for autumn–winter 2008–9 in an increasingly world class Moda Lisboa, reports Tiago Santo


LIKE NO OTHER SETTING, Lisboa’s Fashion Week gave itself up for a pioneer happening in a casino!
   The casino atmosphere featured the best fashion designers on the catwalk, while gambling fanatics chose to look aside and continue betting.
   Lisboa’s Fashion Week translated itself into a four-day event where, once again, rich embroidered textiles, fusing prosperous designs and well-off patterns made heads shake and mouths drop with the imagery exposed on the catwalk.
   Fashion designers profiled their winter collections with bright, strong colours, leaving one’s mind wondering if they were presenting their winter or summer collections.
   Low cuts, flowing textiles and breezy materials may have suggested this was typically a summer festival when we might just blame global warming for summery clothes in winter.
   Besides models and couture fusionists, Portugal’s fashion week has raised its children well. All who made an appearance this season have defiantly obtained their success through past presences.
   Not only are they getting their earned success, they’re getting better by the season which may just justify front-row appearances from new international journalists from the us, France, Italy and Spain.

Pedro Mourao
If this were Project Runway and I a younger Tim Gunn, this designer would be classified as top talent.
   Not only was it a great collection but it was a men’s collection.
   It was brilliantly inspired by air, captains and male heroic storytellers. Pedro takes us through the 1940s, referencing aviators’ suits and contemporary travel.
   The silhouette is slim and elongated through the usage of scarves and oversized accessories. Wool, leather and cotton are the main materials.

Dino Alves
Alves showed a conceptual line entitled Wrong. The collection’s insight derived mainly from ‘What can possibly go wrong?’, whether it be flaws, mistakes or setbacks of day-to-day lifestyle.
   ‘I accept them [mistakes] whole-heartedly because there was a lot to learn from all of them and they were often the departure for new and more interesting work!’ said Alves.
   It’s a statement well put when seeing the firmness of the collection, anticipating a well brought together mix of patterns and "errors" that just made the collection usable.
   The silhouette is unclear in shape and form, as parts of the body are wrapped around in different textiles.
   Silk, denim and cotton present a blend mix of tenuous colours such as black, mustard yellow, olive drab and different shades of grey.
   In a decadent bourgeoisie theme, Dino has outdone himself once again, showing a consistent collection that’s styled preferably for the young in 2009.

Ricardo Dourado
It’s been seen before but I must admit that collegial uniform-inspired collections make me wonder.
   The designer’s vision regarding the elimination of social boundaries through uniforms has inspired others, but have a good twist and informality.
   Wool, cotton mixtures and silk made it to the runway, cementing Ricardo’s point of view of what social upbringing should aspire to at the end of 2009.

Filipe Faisca
Coquette meets geometrical shapes from the 1960s. Filipe Faisca was one of the most interesting collections to check out for 2009, mostly because it’s amusing to see designers struggle to capture the libertine look, through structured textures and masculine-feminine convergence.
   Grey, beige, pink, deep purple and metallic shapes cover a fluid silhouette that, for me, seems to be thrashing the libertine years, evolving to a more consistent and geometrical era.

Katty Xiomara
Katty has always been one of my all-time favourites, whose work has always been worth mentioning.

Although working well and consistently through her collections, Metropolis was a beautiful rerun of what I had imagined from Katty.
   Futuristic, deliciously declining and melancholic are what best describe Katty and her vision of the future.
   Mechanical forms are treated more smoothly and incorporated into day-to-day fashion; volumes and shapes tend to get bigger as well.
   Katty uses colours that reflect both brightness and darkness, blending them with sobriety and respect for harmony.

Jose Antonio Tenente
As one of the most respected designers at Fashion Week, Tenente is always an artist to watch out for because of his conciseness.
   Almost flawless and beautifully paired in men’s and women’s styles, Tenente reaches for a classical reference, grasping a challenging time warp between the 17th and 20th centuries.
   Grey, aubergine, light red and lime shed upon micro patterns and traditional male constructions in tweed, twill, and cotton.

Lidija Kolovrat
Techno-nature! What is that you ask? Imagine a more conceptual line with a cross-shaping of materials.
   Inspired by the meaning we give to animals and nature, the collection’s point of view somehow presents an odd landscape for winter.

Miguel Vieira
Although more subtle and wearable, Miguel thrives to always take his collections one step further. His attitude towards fashion has extended from the runways as his talent spread into home décor, eyewear and jewellery.
   For autumn–winter, Miguel’s vision of sophistication is reflected in the belted retro-cut men’s suits and in the volumetric curves of sensuality in women.
   The silhouettes are geometrical and bathed in a moonless-night black and blue carbon. Materials such as pure wool, cashmere, silk and false astrakhan derive from Miguel’s earlier work.

Nuno Gama
The heritage behind Nuno’s collection anticipates all of his effort to give something extra to men’s garments and accessories.
   Gama is an inspired designer who we are happy to see back at Fashion Week, where he portrays a modern and elegant silhouette that has a tension with tradition. •



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From top: Nuno Gama, Pedro Mourao, Dino Alves, Ricardo Dourado, Filipe Faisca, Katty Xiomara, Jose Antonio Tenente, Lidija Kolovrat, Miguel Vieira.

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photographed by Fabio Sartori/