I was recently fortunate enough to attend the preview for the Ports 1961 S/S14 collection (side notes to the fabulous Plug PR for a) winning the account and b) doing a fantastic job of this preview).
“Sports Couture” is the key central theme for both the men’s and the women’s collections. This would seem to be an elevation over the usual term of “sports luxe” This is evident in both collections by the exquisite materials used, the beautiful detailing and the finishing that was shown whilst keeping in line with the sports wear traditions in the easy to wear shapes.
The women’s wear was designed by Fiona Cibani and the chief inspiration was Michaelangelo Antonioni’s 1970 film ‘Zabriskie Point’. At the time of its release, the film was not a commercial success but has since become an art house classic. The film is based a lot about a couple and their journey into the desert. Cue sunrise and sunset prints, sky blue hues, sandy colours featured in the collection.
The collection itself is super wearable, lots of gorgeous dresses but also plenty of separates. The classic Ports 1961 white shirt remained a focal part of the collection (this version was long enough for models to walk the runway wearing it as a dress. For us lesser mortals it means sparing our blushes and banishing the horrid phenomena of “builder’s bum”.
Sunrise and sunset prints were some of the stand out pieces of the collection. I loved the sunrise print jumper but also the dresses that featured the sunrise and sunset prints. SUPER distinctive yet not too scary to wear.
Easy to wear jackets, shirts and skirts plus the dresses means that this is a wardrobe that pretty much any woman would want to own. It consists of pieces ready for work, for casual lunches and for evening functions. Clean lines and sports wear shapes… what is there not to like for the Ports 1961 woman?Sports Couture at its BEST
The couture elements definitely came from the hand-stitching of the embellishments, the exquisite materials (lace and velvet overlay on one skirt) and the beautiful origami pleats on one piece. (Coincidentally we say the blue version of the origami dress and on the runway it was the white version which Julia Roberts wore to an event!!)
Ports 1961 excelled again with their shoes and bags. Vivid colours which complemented the collection beautifully. The heels in a multitude of colours were my favourites – high enough for me to feel elegant but with a thick enough heel for all us HK girls to be able to stride with confidence!
FINALLY, I can start on the men’s collection. We were fortunate to see the men’s collection (actually not available in HK) side by side with the women’s collection. Designed by Fiona Cibani and Ian Hylton, Ports 1961 Spring / Summer 2014 Men’s collection is inspired by the sculptural artworks of Rainer Lagemann, which capture the human body in motion. A geometric freeze frame of classic, timeless gestures and emotions are conveyed through silhouettes, materials and details. This can be seen especially in the stunning graphical prints of the suits and accessories.
All the bloggers were in love with the chunky knits, the suede shorts and for me the prints on the suits as well as the purple suit. A shout out must also go to the designing team for the fabulous accessories from the brogues of many colours to the “man” bags. To be honest, I would have used any of those bags and clutches in the men’s collection.
Rainer Lagemann’s influence can definitely be seen in the graphic quality featured on some of the suits. The different scales of the prints were handled so well that they should be appreciated and admired.
If I could, I would have definitely taken away the cute suede shorts in green and the chunky sweater…
Once again Ports 1961 were highly successful with their accessories (something I do not usually make a point of mentioning regarding men’s collections). Their brogues were super colourful and chic and the variety of bags was bag heaven. I would have snapped up the dossier holders with the Rainer Lagemann inspired print, the super squishy large suede bags and what I like to call my fancy cat carrier….
Super Squishy Suede Bags…
The beauty of seeing both collections side by side is that you can truly picture the couple who would wear those clothes. They would be THAT couple you would want to be with and want to be. These two collections definitely complement each other.
Ports 1961 women’s collection will be available in HK stores from early 2014. For the men’s collections, you will need to look to a trip to Europe or US. For more information please contact Plug PR’s Resham Kirpalaney.
N.B. Runway shots of the collections are courtesy of Plug PR and Ports 1961, the other images of the collections were taken by me.