South African label Akedo has always had a very visceral approach to design. Forgoing the relative ease of clean finishes and deft pattern cutting, the label’s previous collections have relied on heavy textural exploration and three dimensional architectural style design to transmute ideas. Its clothes have always been feminine, but never conventionally so. The label’s AW16 collection, shown at the Mercedes Benz Fashion Week, expands on this dichotomy of ideas.
The collection continues many of the label’s now signature design idiosyncrasies; hand painted motifs, androgynous pieces and texture. Sheer chiffon and lycra blends are some of the fabric that the collection is built on, but the most intriguing is linen with an exaggerated weave. It is gritty, a kind of blue collar aesthetic that runs through the collection.
This mix of blue collar and high concept minimalism produces interesting results. Akedo takes the wide leg capri for a spin, completely deconstructing it till it is a perfect argument for minimalism; exposed zip closure, trouser legs cinched at the base and everything lined in contrast piping.
It looks like it is hanging off the model, but only just.
Akedo leans heavily on contrast piping to give this collection definition, highlighting many of the design quirks of the collection in contrast or complementary piping. It is almost exhibitionist in scope, but masterful in execution. rough edged cut outs, crop vests, ribbon ties. exaggerated weave linens.
Abstract motifs of faces, mouths, eyes and noses sit randomly on select pieces, others detailed with lace up ribbons threaded into shoelace plugs. These and the zip closures are the only detailing Akedo allows itself, and they are used judiciously across droopy sweaters and gypsy skirts. Akedo also delves into accessorizes with leather and canvas folios, deconstructed handbags in nude and earth tones and snazzy platform sandals.
The collection is a glimpse into what African minimalism spliced with a distinct bohemian vibe will look like. Colour us intrigued.
Mercedes Benz Fashion Week Johannesburg
Nelson Mandela Square, Sandton, Gauteng, South Africa.