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The two opening acts of the sixteenth edition of Amsterdam Fashion Week could hardly be more different. First off was classic menswear designer Sjaak Hullekes, followed by the enfant terrible of Dutch fashion: Bas Kosters.
Dancers were first on the catwalk, wearing nothing but underwear to present Hullekes’ intimates line named Sensitives. Catering to fashion-conscious men, Hullekes and companion Sebastiaan Kramer created a line of briefs and boxers from high-quality materials.
Hullekes’ characteristic classic tailoring was given a boost through the use of warm, earth colours and indigo. A Moroccan vibe paired with 1970s glam dominated as models came down the runway wearing fedoras, large bead necklaces and beautifully tailored trousers and shirts. Colour-pairings of aubergine and indigo, tangerine and rich browns gave the collection a luxury vibe.
On the other spectrum of fashion design was anti-fashion hero Bas Kosters, who turned his show into an outright party. Beginning with the designer himself - head to toe in his own creations - putting on a performance, models came down the runway wearing fuzzy bear trousers, telephone-print dresses and colourful prints.
One is part of Salon/, the other is part of Amsterdam Fashion Week. Two of the Netherlands' most prominent fashion academies presented two very different outlooks on the future this week.
Named Stop|Start, the communal vision of the future by ArtEZ’ students was represented through bold colours, geometric prints and voluminous silhouettes. In the belief that what was once contrasting will in the future blend into one another, Collectie Arnhem 2012 showed silhouettes reminiscent of trees with their roots spread out wide.
Juxtapositions of complementary colours such as green and red or blue and gold were visualized in both broad and slender stripes, accentuating the contrast between graphic and organic prints. To complement, and nodding towards Spring fashion, was the use of neon-coloured accessories.
Striking were the cuts of the fabric which seemed to follow the bodies’ shape like a waterfall of fabric, bending the striped pattern along the way. Overall the large team succeeded in creating a coherent collection.
A much larger venue - the Westergasfabriek - was given to Individuals by AMFI for its show named DUALS. The catwalk was strewn with what seemed like ash, loud urban music filled the hall and models marched over the catwalk in biker-boots and with covered faces.
This collection gave a very different outlook on the future, one with a more apocalyptic approach. Common thread in the collection was the question ‘what time could this be’, evident in the choice of materials and colour.
Blacks, browns and muted suit fabrics dominated the collection which focussed heavily on functionality. Some workwear-inspired pieces - both from the office and workshop - hinted towards the current political climate in the form of riots, Occupy and the financial crisis.
Bomber jackets, oversized hoodies and the use of leather formed a collection in which the wearer feels protected and strong.
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