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top 5 translucent looks for spring/summer 14

It’s a rare day in fashion when you get to deem a collection completely transparent without being banned from the show the following season, but for the spring/summer 14 women’s collections it wouldn’t be wrong, nor would it be rude. Because not since Cher did the 80s has the fashion world seen so many skinny tall girls in see-through garments. From dresses (everywhere) to shoes (Ann Demeulemeester) and even headwear (Simone Rocha), translucency made its spring/summer 14 arrival crystal clear, and made sure to provide the fashion press with enough puns to last the season.

Text Anders Christian Madsen
Photography Mitchell Sams

  • 5. Fendi

    For fashion’s number one tech fiend, one Herr Karl Lagerfeld, the element of translucency wasn’t used to sex things up, but rather to create a layer of softness over the geometrical computer chip patterns on dresses such as look twenty in the Fendi collection, which paid a sneaky nod to another spring/summer 14 favourite, namely orange. What was also brilliant about the show was that transparency easily became an excuse to wear two dresses at the same time, or create seemingly endless layers with all translucent separates, dresses and outerwear in a single look. Clever Karl.


    Fendi spring/summer 14

  • 4. Christopher Kane

    Straight ahead and left? As far as getting directions goes, it doesn’t get much better than Christopher Kane’s translucent arrow dress, which of course had nothing to do with navigation and everything to do with illustrating the photosynthesis, echoed in the botanical design on the skirt. But edutainment aside, the contrast of the darker transparency of the arrows with the more see-through transparency of the top and skirt themselves created a windows-to-the-skin-like effect, which almost made a totally sheer look seem opaque. Beauty and brains.


    Christopher Kane spring/summer 14

  • 3. Haider Ackermann

    One of the obvious problems when it comes to translucency is the fact that you kind of need a certain degree of layering not to walk around with your modesty on display. Unless, of course, you’re fabulous and French and wear Haider Ackermann, in which case such issues aren’t issues at all. Backstage Haider said he had an idea of ‘the handsome woman’ in mind when he designed his darkly opulent collection, and in the case of look 12’s loose-fitted translucent t-shirt that attitude was pretty spot-on.


    Haider Ackermann spring/summer 14

  • 2. Valentino

    With all the see-through floatiness going on, things can easily get a tad light and breezy in the translucency department. At Valentino, however, the transparent element was merely used as a skin-revealing backdrop for Maria Grazia Chiuri and Pierpaolo Piccioli’s magnificent embellishment – inspired by the costumes of the Rome Opera – to sit on, best illustrated in a skirt in the third look, which so gracefully combined the heaviness of the ornamentation with the lightness of the translucency. Dreamy.


    Valentino spring/summer 14

  • 1. Louis Vuitton

    How do you wear a heavily embellished, black floor-length translucent dress with feather adornment and sparkly things? With blue jeans, of course. Perhaps the most memorable look of the spring/summer 14 season, Marc Jacobs’ ninth exit at his grand final bow at Louis Vuitton managed to sum up the spirit of contrasts, which has partly defined the designer’s sixteen-year residency at the house, and throw some viable styling tippage in the hat all at once. For an evening occasion, you might want to add a gigantuous Plains Indian war bonnet to the mix.


    Louis Vuitton spring/summer 14. Photography Mitchell Sams