Raf Simon, on the verge of debuting his highly anticipated Christian Dior collection, released his signature Men’s collection, Spring 2013 Raf by Raf Simon, with the intent to showcase what made him famous by merging elements of masculine and female clothing with artistic color. The duality between men and women is first seen in the uniformity of the models’ hair, which was styled short on one side and left in long wet waves on the other. The runway was filled with the thin faces and slender silhouettes that have become a trademark of Raf’s work.
Shorts are a signature Spring/Summer staple for Raf, but he used them as part of a highly tailored suit as opposed to the casual sportswear. Jackets with nipped-in waists were paired with tailored shorts slit at the thigh resembling the slide slit of a pencil skirt, or pants that pooled boyishly at the ankles, worn over sneakers. This combination of classic tailoring and sports wear is meant to appeal to the transition from youth into adult. The colors of the suits ranged from dark office palette such as brown, grey, and navy to artistic pieces where a pleated floral sundress was stitched to the back of a slim grey suit jacket.
The pale bare legs and identical messes of hair championed the vulnerable self-consciousness of teenagers that Raf has strived to represent throughout his career. Clothes meant for desperate youth were on full display with the huge painted faces on oversized tees by L.A. artist Brian Calvin. The piercing round eyes found on t-shirts were meant to show Raf’s artistic bravery said the artist, and “I love eyes.”
The collection may be too bold though, as oversized t-shirts worn as sundresses, along with the floral patterned business suits, will most likely not be seen on the streets of Paris or New York, although we wish they were.