By day three of Portland Fashion Week, it was clear the 8 pm showtime was a very loose estimate, but the crowd of wine tippling spectators did not seem to mind, and once the show got going it held some nice surprises in store. Kicking things off was Dimitri, a men's collection that had a warped Southern California theme, with tight tee shirts emblazoned with off-kilter chihuahua graphics (was that a syringe in its mouth?) and Hollywood signs, styled with bullet belts and walking dangerously close to the line over which one crosses into total douchebaggery.
But then, it got better.
All photos are by MINH TRAN!
Nike Considered is the green line of the sportswear giant, and the looks that came out were cutely styled, with lots of references to '70s and '80s sportswear, colorful variations on classic Nike high tops (I do love a good Dunk), and a generally upbeat and appealing showing.
I have to assume that the black socks paired with those horrible sport slides--is there anything more horrid than those?--is an exercise in irony, in which case, I kind of appreciate the humor.
The pinwheel motif is more stoner than athlete to me, but we all know most of these clothes will never set foot on a track.
Alula was up next, a line from Seattle that showed lots of shorts and dresses in nice colors, although I would have liked to see a tighter focus in the collection; the palette was all over the place. I loved the bloomers peeking out of a shrieking pink dress, and a finale romper that mocked all but the most delicate of female frames.
May Tee showed her new looks for spring, which I had already glimpsed at the designer's studio, but the simple shapes and fantastic fits really came to life on the body.
Sameunderneath brought up the rear, and I have to say I was pleasantly surprised. Gone were the pervasive logos that haunted previous collections, and the menswear in particular shone. I was crazy about the green pants--where is the female version?! They also showed some great sweaters for men--all in all a good showing for them, and moving in a more exciting direction. It was, however, a tad exhaustive... we don't need to see every single thing in every single color. Nonetheless, I was pleased.
Okay, so I hated this dress, which didn't relate to the rest of the collection at all. It's all a bit too "vacationing in Hawaii" corny for me.
Get the best of the Mercury each week in your inbox!