For Laison’s spring collection, Indonesian designer Aurelia Santoso turned her eye toward the military unrest and political conflict faced daily on a global scale. As she sees it, these problems stem from pushing ideals on others, and the solution, as she said after the show, is making allowance for “different perspectives and points of view, and a different way of translating things.”

That philosophy came through in her feminized military garb, and in the reinterpretation of camouflage print with three-dimensional shapes cut out and sewn atop pants pockets as well as protruding from bustier tops. The pattern was also digitally printed, embroidered or beaded straight onto some pieces. Too much volume and poor styling got the best of Laison at times; two looks, one an ample white jacket over a shapeless mint-colored dress, the other, rolled-up ochre pleated pants paired with one of the 3-D bustiers, did nothing for the models, and would likely not flatter regular women, either. On the other hand, the bustier as part of the flowing mint-colored finale dress worked.

Santoso, who also showed this collection during New York Fashion Week, attended the Otis College of Art and Design in Los Angeles before graduating from the Raffles Design Institute in Singapore. The designer said showing in L.A. felt like coming full circle. Although the opportunities for any designer showing in New York may be greater than in L.A. in terms of the number of press and buyers in attendance (Laison is not yet in any U.S. doors), Santoso said, “I wouldn’t say no if given another chance to show here again.”

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