The Other Collection created by young, hip, edgy and kooky LA fashion designer Cheryl Koo was a wonderful showcase of this talented lady's work. Cheryl's take on fashion blends urban class and elegant attitude all in one fell swoop. Designing for both women and men; her collection was extensive.
Rumour has it Cheryl is a huge amount of fun and incredibly inspiring to work with. This production oozed personality and displayed great promise.
The event was held at Kesspro Studios in The Arts District, down town. A big, airy warehouse space was spotted with bar style tables and a runway.
At the bar a selection of Smirnoff vodka, Bacardi Rum, Champagne and Glaceau Smart Water was provided for guests. Chipotle steak and chicken burritos were on the menu and Mr Pink provided Vitamin Ginseng cans for that added pick me up.
A mixed crowd of glam, indie and arty types filled the space as a chilled buzz warmed to the main event. The lady herself warmly welcomed everyone, followed by her business developer describing Cheryl's vision and intentions for her very first collection – inspired by the swan in the story of The Ugly Duckling and the notion of beauty being deeper than the skin.
A dramatic and poetic voice over by Cheryl opened the show. She painted pictures with her words of wanting to be a real and daring artist, of a butterfly's struggle to break from it's cocoon and spread it's wings.
Numerous models dressed in striking swan like dresses paraded slowly. This was a platform Koo provided, inviting a selection of artists to display their art on her dresses. Animated prints, one complete with attached origami cranes and heavily layered bustle frills and ruching were arousing to the eye, as was the final model in a long beaked white mask.
The show was divided by two dance interludes. After the first, the audience was asked to wait as they rearranged the stage, stealing momentum, mood and fluency. Perhaps it was to leave us in suspense?
When the crowd gathered themselves for part deux, it was worth the wait. Stunning dresses leaning towards couture – fitted, strapless corsets, dramatic quilted panels, cord and velvet detailing, angular, stark, yet feminine lines and asymmetrical metallic fabrics summonsed a world of geisha like warriors. Hard, yet soft. Graceful and deadly.
Male and female models wore oversized hooded jackets with statement collars, huge pleated winged like creations, slung external holster like pockets on jean pants, high waisted shorts, sunk harem bottoms and long tailored tails in cottons, velvets, satins and textural fabrics. Bold detailing and asymmetrical cuts were favoured, buttons featured heavily in all shapes and sizes, as did thick zippers, quirky coloured lining on jackets and stripes in a mostly metallic, grey and black colour scheme.
The models stylized rotations like posing robot mannequins on the end of the runway was an interesting touch in choreography. The hair was out of this world incredible. Sponsored by Wella Professionals and created by Studio DNA - huge nest like dos and plaited turbans complimented the clothing perfectly. Make up by Polaris Cosmetics was also fabulous.
Cheryl Koo is one to watch. An item of her The Other Collection is definitely one to add to your wardrobe.
Photographs courtesy of Jim Donnelly