In this weekly feature, InStyle’s Fashion News Director Eric Wilson shares his favorite fashion moment of the week, and explains how it could shape styles to come.
The Moment: Following a year-long hiatus since the designer Nicola Formichetti decamped to Diesel, Mugler is back with a new creative director, David Koma (below), one of the young stars of London Fashion Week. While the Clarins-owned house produces some of the most successful fragrances in fashion, its ready-to-wear business hasn’t quite recaptured the sense of futuristic magic that Thierry Mugler created with power suits and catwalk spectacles in the 1980s and ’90s.
Many people remember the label reverentially. So does Koma, who idolized Mugler during his youth and shares a certain body-conscious aesthetic in his signature collection with the label’s founding designer. To Koma, Mugler means “a trouser suit,” he said, “followed by tailoring, tailoring, tailoring, tailoring. And another tailoring.” Naturally, the first look of Koma’s resort collection for Mugler, shown in New York this week, was a white pantsuit that closed with a technical ribbon belt (above, right).
Why It’s a Wow: Koma, who joined Mugler in December, said he wanted to start with a resort collection, rather than a big runway show, to demonstrate that his idea for the label’s future goes beyond a single look. “It was important to set out a new wardrobe and to concentrate on product instead of the catwalk image,” he said. “I want buyers to know we are thinking of a variety of types of women.”
His collection included sparely cut jackets accented with splashes of color in the form of neon ribbons zig-zagging across them, inspired by highlighter markers, he noted. His dresses also featured highlighter prints and metallic hardware—D-rings as embroidery or silver staples that connected the top of a lean black dress to its skirt that picked up on another Mugler signature: “100 percent anatomical understanding of the body,” Koma said.
Learn More: Get to know Koma, a rising star known for his way around a pencil skirt and a snug dress (Jessica Alba, Gwyneth Paltrow, Miranda Kerr, and Olivia Wilde can attest). Born in Tbilisi, Georgia, and raised in St. Petersburg, he studied fashion in London and now commutes to Paris for Mugler.
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