Creative director of Carolina Herrera talks through new collection at Dubai Fashion Week
DUBAI: Dubai Fashion Week began on Monday with Carolina Herrera presenting its spring/summer 2024 collection at Dubai Design District. In town was its creative director, Wes Gordon, who spoke to Arab News about the collection and the importance of the Middle East market to the brand.
The clothes, an ode to Nineties chic, were a combination of understated everyday-wear silhouettes in bright colors alongside elaborate party dresses featuring layers of tulle — both of which would do well in the region.
Gordon said that he was “excited” when the label, a New York Fashion Week staple, was approached to present at Dubai Fashion Week.
“I was really excited to come here and show the clothes. Our brand is bigger than the collection you see here. We have a tremendous beauty, fragrance and eyewear business, so as a whole this region is incredibly important to us,” he said.
He also believes that the clothes resonate well with women in the Gulf.
“I think this collection is a real embrace of color, joy and emotional dressing. It’s never for a woman looking to disappear or blend in. The collection is about looking fabulous and feeling fabulous. And I think that’s the mindset of women here when they shop and get dressed.”
On offer was an array of timeless yet modern garments that were also pragmatic. Gordon adds that Caroline Herrera is not only a house about gorgeous gowns — they also have everyday pieces. Think a white poplin shirt, pencil skirts, chic cardigans and cleverly cut blazers.
“I was in love with these Nineties ideas — of Carolyn Bessette-Kennedy — and the magic sometimes with just a simple pencil skirt, a crisp white cotton shirt, a pair of beautiful heels and a cardigan,” he said. “Combining simple pieces can sometimes become magic on a chic woman when her personality shines.”
Elsewhere there were evening dresses, which account for a significant part of the brand’s business. A full-skirted buttercup-yellow dress came with a grey sash on the waist, prom-dress style, while another strapless number shimmered with sequins from top to bottom.
What could not be missed was the mini yellow crinoline strapless dress, which referenced historical silhouettes, but with an ultra-modern spin to it.
“For example, the shape is sculpted to give it this bell shape, and then it’s all embroidered on top. If you look beneath that, you’ll see nothing inside the dress — it’s a completely hollow floating shape — so it’s very modern. Historically, that dress would have been a thousand layers of tulle,” Gordon said.
It was a fashionable and commercial collection — and the perfect start to Dubai Fashion Week, which runs until Oct. 15.