Stitches

New York Fashion Week

New York Fashion Week for spring 2015 celebrated color and whimsy, as designers sent richly embellished dresses down the runways. And, designers who traditionally produce sportswear added innovative embroideries to their garments to give their collections glam. Stitches scoped out two collections that stood out for their embroidery work this season.

New York Fashion Week

Nicole Miller went to Rio for her spring 2015 collection, and it’s full of bold tropical and floral embellishments. The clothing was a parade of solid sportswear staples like shapely skirts, cropped tops and blazers. The bright island colors and botanical prints popped against the apparel’s basic color palette. Some of the shoes’ fabric matched the apparel’s embroidery work.

The embellishments were lush to match the Brazilian theme, as the catwalk backdrop waved with palm tree silhouettes. Miller’s embroideries were three-dimensional gardens of cut leather leaves and flowers, with wooden beads densely stitched in to create a rustic, folk art effect. In addition, detailed knit intarsia pineapples and bananas matched the flower and fruit motifs.

Tip: If you’re trying to create a rustic, ethnic look, use natural materials like leather, wood and raffia. Stick with natural, earthy colors or ones found often in your inspiration culture to embroider your motifs.

New York Fashion Week

Designer Son Jung Wan was inspired by yin and yang for her spring 2015 collection. This concept of contrast and balance shows in her use of rough, raw-edged hemp fabrics paired with delicate silk. There was also a yin/yang feel as richer colors paired with metallic thread and made the clothing look like it was being struck by lightning. Sweet spring pastels were seriously amped up with iridescent fabrics and a wild mix of materials in the embroideries. The pastel pieces were embellished with a combination of solid-colored jewels, pearl finishes and lenticular illusion paillettes.

New York Fashion Week

There were other embroidered pieces that featured a dense tonal mix of sequins. The garments themselves were simple, like sleeveless hoodies or shift dresses. The designer created the texture of the embellishments with a very concentrated mix of flat and cupped sequins of different shapes and sizes to upgrade lounge wear to luxe wear.

Tip: Give any silhouette or body a luxurious makeover by making the base fabric a densely embellished one. Build up a rich texture by mixing inexpensive materials like sequins and varying the sizes and shapes. If you can’t afford a densely embroidered design, fill up your fabric with larger materials that have different finishes and contrasting shapes or colors. Space out the embroidered elements for maximum impact.