Alexis Martial and Adrien Caillaudaud’s Carven girl loves to travel. Last season, she was back from a deep-sea diving excursion with souvenirs from her adventures in tow. For Fall/Winter 2016, she has returned from Kathmandu in Nepal, where the marbled peaks of Mount Everest were a constant backdrop during her stay. Now that she’s back in the city, she flaunts her worldly travels in new combinations of textures both sleekly urban and ruggedly mountainous – the latter borrowed from the Sherpa people in the forms of thick shearling, knitwear, and shaggy fur. Although Martial and Caillaudaud are new to their posts at Carven, this collection posits a smart move forward for the brand, marked by an increase in experimental design techniques.
The Carven girl is defined by a love of unusual textures, and this code has been uplifted by the designers for Fall/Winter 2016. Thrilling combinations of liquid PVC, plush knit, fur, leather, and velvet brought their runway to life and helped fulfil the tale of a city girl who just spent a sabbatical in the mountains. Chapters of her story unfolded across chunky marled knits, which were shown as sophisticated wrap-dresses with shearling and leather trim, (presumably faux) snow-leopard fur coats, masculine ribbed sweaters with metal grommet studs, buttery-soft leather trousers, and more. Looks grew fuller and more vivid as Martial and Caillaudaud introduced city life into the equation. These elements were found in puffer jackets, glossy PVC trousers, and jackets and footwear printed with lightning bolts.
As disparate as the urban jungle and snow-capped peaks may be from each other, they were complementary when working in tandem. Therefore, knit sweaters combined with puffer jackets and PVC trousers looked contemporary and slick, but cozy and inviting at the same time. As the show progressed, the clothes were more inventively decorative, especially in the case of marbled textures on romantic lace blouses, glittering mini dresses, and printed tops encrusted with sequined paillettes. In order to display the different environments a jetsetting muse might experience, Carven’s show also contained translucent blouses and feminine frocks with floral-printed underthings – a suggestion of spring subdued by winter frost. By pushing experimentation this season and anchoring their collection with a backstory that many could picture themselves as the subjects of, Carven’s new dynamic duo has landed on a keen formula for self-expression. From here, it’s onwards and upwards.