In the past century, the original Grimm Brothers tales have been declawed. Where once young innocents met bitter ends, the stories now have happy endings. Meadham Kirchhoff returns bite to folkloric tales with a collection that preys upon innocent schoolgirls (metaphorically speaking). The Kirchhoff girl, in her funny red wig, bears a close resemblance to Pippi Longstocking; in a blonde version, she’s Goldilocks. She’s escaped a derelict mansion and she’s wandering through the woods, with Kirchhoff’s fantastical fashions helping to enhance the spooky plotline. In dirndl dresses, bobby socks, brogues, bat sunglasses, and Amish straw chapeaus, Kirchhoff blends a variety of heroines into a single archetype. The clothes are fetching, even romantic, but one gets the sense that she’s being trussed up for a dark ritual.
Kirchhoff finds a balance between story and style with looks that translate to the real world. There are embroidered apron dresses worn over patterned button-ups, peasant sleeved cut-out tops with collars that wrap around the throat, sheer babydoll dresses trimmed with romantic lace, and old-fashioned gingham skirts finished with black lace hems. One red lace slip dress with a jagged hem suggests a modern take on Little Red Riding Hood after the wolf has snapped viciously at her fleeing figure. Looks that will catch on like fire for Spring/Summer are the reflective metallic coats touched lightly with a textured pattern, snakeskin printed jackets, and cherry blossom trousers. Outerwear was strong in this collection – pair these unyielding, edgy pieces with Kirchhoff’s dreamy dresses and embrace unconventionality for the season.
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