Inspired by the Mod culture that was spawned as an alternative to the pervasive rock and roll culture that followed the meteoric rise of the Beatles in 1960’s Britain, Innocente Messy, the creative director behind her eponymous brand has always been on the lookout for ways to intersect historical influences with contemporary culture.
With a degree in fashion from the London College of Fashion and independent work padding her portfolio, Messy joins the ranks of first generation classically trained designers of African descent bringing new perspectives to African fashion with her debut collection.
Messy juxtaposes classic mod culture elements like the classic leather jacket cut and aesthetic metal zip closures with classic feminine silhouettes. She eschews fit for comfort and employs colour-blocking techniques to jazz up an exaggerated blouson jacket. Exaggerated sleeves, shawl style draping and contrasting colour are other techniques Messy employs in the Mobaly collection.
But her ace is the use of outsize embroidered chain stitches as a kind of three dimensional embellishment. She uses it to provide texture in otherwise demure dresses. In other places she uses it as form of sleight of hand, drawing attention to waistlines and detailed hems. It is very interesting and quite original, and Messy uses it with such deftness that even though it runs through the collection it never becomes dated.
It’s mindboggling to process that this is Messy’s first collection. It’s a tour de force.
www.innocentemessy.com, [email protected]