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Suzy Menkes

Vogue International Editor Suzy Menkes is the best-known fashion journalist in the world. After 25 years commenting on fashion for the International Herald Tribune (rebranded recently as The International New York Times), Suzy Menkes now writes exclusively for Vogue online, covering fashion worldwide.

Anna Sui: Swinging Along

The designer keeps 1960s style relevant

18 Февраля 2016

Anna Sui, fall 2016 ready-to-wear
Anna Sui, fall 2016 ready-to-wear

I saw the founder of swinging Sixties fashion - Barbara Hulanicki - sitting front row at Anna Sui. Her shiny bob of hair and tiny frame looked much the same as in photographs of her taken half a century ago. She is now pushing 80 years old. 

I was not surprised that Anna Sui would be showing muted purple velvet, Art Nouveau patterns, feather boas and runway couples, where it was intentionally hard to tell the girls from the boys. My immediate thought was of the new Gucci Creative Director Alessandro Michele. If his pieces had been blended into this collection, I am not sure that even I, as a fashion editor, could have picked them out.

Anna Sui, fall 2016 ready-to-wear
Anna Sui, fall 2016 ready-to-wear

What is it about that 1960s/70s fashion era - that was itself retro - harking back to the Art Nouveau period of a more distant past? Anna Sui's meld of pattern, texture, as in woolly Mongolian lamb, skirts short or long, slim silken dresses and dark hose has created a canvas from which the designer picks something to re-paint each season. Her great strength is joy: keeping the fun of fashion alive.

Anna Sui, fall 2016 ready-to-wear
Anna Sui, fall 2016 ready-to-wear

Even her familiar version of his 'n hers couples seems charming, so long after males with long hair sent shock waves through society, and so different from the fierce, even angry, gender blending of today. Let's hope that the Anna Sui look will survive, as it has for so many years, the innovations that do not necessarily make fashion closets a happier place.

Anna Sui, fall 2016 ready-to-wear
Anna Sui, fall 2016 ready-to-wear


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