Like many European designers this season, Dries Van Noten said it with flowers. Given his eye for mixing prints of varying scale and colorations — plus his penchant for gardening — few are likely to say it better.
The subject of an exhibition next year at Les Arts Décoratifs, the Belgian designer has already dug into the museum’s archives, unearthing floral and botanical prints from the last three centuries. He also added scans of freshly cut flowers, and paraded his artful arrangements in front of a Mylar curtain as Lenny Kravitz drummer Cindy Blackman Santana let loose with improvised beats.
Billowing silk robes, shirtlike blazers and fluid pants in glossy jacquards gave the collection a pajamalike ease, tightening up occasionally with a sturdy cotton coat or a crisp naval blazer. There were athletic shapes, too — anoraks, tank tops and surfer shorts. The floral prints ran from muddied and smudged in inky shades to vivid chinoiserie blooms. Plenty of men, and not only shrinking violets, might be wary of them.
In lieu of flowers, there were some handsomely tailored coats and jackets sprouting knockout gold bullion embroidery.