PFW AW14: Leonard


Like the remakes of classic movies, this is the era of rebuilding classic fashion houses. With the Léonard Fall 2014 Ready to Wear collection, Yiqing Yin attempts what her two predecessors in as many years couldn’t: to breathe life into a staid line with a venerable, if debated, history. Yin makes smart use of the house’s formidable prints, creating new, delicate visuals reportedly inspired by Japanese illustrator Takato Yamamoto and combined with Léonard originals.

For a distinctly Parisian line with ties to Japan (the first western-designed kimonos came from Léonard), selecting a Chinese émigrée trained at the Ecole Nationale des Arts Décoratifs might be an off kilter choice. Yet Yin’s own signature muted shades counter the resort-heavy Leonard norm. She incorporates the casual feel of long-sleeved T-shirts that tie to the house, but tops them with her skillful pleats and draping. These, too, connect to the line’s Japanese tradition. What misses entirely, though, is the slouchy Puss-in-Boots footwear.

There are inspired pieces tucked into the folds of the collection, but the question remains whether Yin can separate her own continuing line from the direction Léonard hopes to go. Silhouettes and details alike continuing from the Spring 2014 collection of her eponymous line (she will continue her independent work while at the creative helm for Léonard). As pretty as they are, one wonders if she has enough inspiration to carry the two.

Leonard Fall 2014 RTW Look 7

Leonard Fall 2014 RTW Look 13

Leonard Fall 2014 RTW Look 15

Leonard Fall 2014 RTW Look 21

Leonard Fall 2014 RTW Look 22

Images courtesy

by Alison Santighian

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