Childhood travels have been a clear influence on Haider Ackermann's designs throughout his career, with sensual spice colours and elegantly draped layers being a familiar and exotic signature. However, save for a couple of kimono-style coats and trailing ribbon ties, this nomadic, sometimes bohemian aesthetic was largely missing from the designer's spring/summer show. Described by Haider Ackermann himself as "ordered chaos", this was a collection that seemed to center on playing stark opposites against one another.
Tailoring was in abundance on the designer's Spring/Summer '17 catwalk, perhaps a reflection of his new role as Creative Director at Italian menswear label Berluti. He showed both close-cropped and loose, long-line blazers, which provided the 'order', offset by clever cut-outs and a blood-spattered print to signify the chaos, as well as nod to the designer's darker, more subversive side.
There was also a not-before-seen glam rock element to the collection, low-slung pants, a loose, languid shirt and pleated full-length skirt were all fashioned in leopard print lame.
Models sporting spiked hair in feather-like crowns and dressed in a palette of electric colors, described by the Paris-based Colombian as "paradise birds on acid", wore impossibly languid floor-sweeping skirts and strikingly simple so-called goddess gowns. The diaphanous long skirts were styled with tiny, tough leather jackets which played to a masculine vs feminine theme, also seen in the pairing of an oversized slogan-sweatshirt with a sassy thigh-skimming skirt.
It remains to be seen whether this distinctive new direction will evolve further in the future, once Ackermann firmly settles into his dual designer roles, but it's safe to say that this extreme burgeoning duality in his eponymous collection will guarantee ongoing success, commercial and otherwise.