Tomas Maier, the brand's creative director, hopped a time machine to Seventies California with a collection of slouchy separates that would be right at home at a seaside hippie commune – albeit a very luxurious one.
Loose, pullover tunic tops were a pillar of the collection and came in buttery suede the color of Nutella, faded gray, and pale olive. Versions that came with lace-up details at the neck or hippie fringes at the bottom looked more like costumes, and conjured the wardrobes of Haight-Ashbury folk or Grateful Dead fans.
Other silhouettes were more winning – as was the color palette that featured dusty shades of red, cement, teal, and taupe. There were artfully crumpled suits – single and double-breasted – and featherweight coats.
More structured and slim–fitting suits looked at first glance as if they were stained with spilt coffee or tea. But Maier’s man is too poised to be dribbling his morning cuppa down the front of his outfit. on closer inspection, the marks were actually a faded flower print – fitting for a man who spends his time under a sunny sky.
For Spring-Summer 2013, Bottega Veneta offers a collection inspired by the ease and informality of the pullover.
The near-universal garment — a top that is pulled on over the head — recalls clothing as varied as navy seaman’s uniforms and South Asian kurtas. At Bottega Veneta, it’s casual and lightweight, with a breezy, retro sensibility. Narrow, cropped pants worn with pullover shirts and t-shirts have the effortless feel of sportswear. The slim, natural-looking silhouette is enhanced by nuanced tailoring and offhand layering.
Natural leather hues ground a palette filled with tempered shades of blue and gray. Breezy, luxe materials are drawn from unexpected sources. Refined fabrics from women’s wear — silk chiffon, organza, silk poplin, silk crepe de chine, and parachute silk — are washed and treated, frequently paired with cotton, then used for shirts, windbreakers, anoraks, and jackets. Technical materials like ultrafine polyesters and dense synthetics with body and a supple hand add structure to slacks and shirts. There are cottons of varying weights, including fluid cotton jersey and cotton blended with linen. Suedes range in weight and feel from superfine suede, with a liquid drape, to a heavier version with a dense, plush attitude. Wrinkled paper calfskin is distinguished by its rich surface and shine.
Functionality and an uncontrived approach to luxurious materials characterize the season’s accessories. Bags are soft, slouchy, and understated, many with long straps so they can be slung across the body. Shoes are ankle-high, with a pliable construction, minimal sole, and the relaxed energy of ‘70s athletic shoes.
“The collection is inspired by this very simple shape, a top that you pull over your head,” says Creative Director Tomas Maier. “It’s a piece that you find in traditional and contemporary cultures all over the world. And it’s worn by people doing so many different kinds of activities. Soldiers, sailors, fishermen, mountain climbers, they all wear a version of a tunic or pullover. We wanted to explore how it can work in contemporary wardrobes.” credit: nssmag