It’s always interesting noticing that economics rules apply to the world of fashion. Take the concept of the market saturation applied to Hervé Léger bandage dresses: some years ago, you couldn’t open a fashion magazine or check an on-line gossip column without being gaped by an endless line of bandage dresses, worn by more or less famous celebrities, starlets or simple wannabes. I guess Ljuba and Max Azria, the minds behind the historical French-born brand, have realized their goal has been more than achieved; as for me, I slowly started to hate them, envisioning an implosion of contemporary economics, due to a high offer of bandage dresses and a sky-high demand of the same. After the storm, thank God, things went slowly back to normality: Kim Kardashian moved on and all the herd followed.
Now I can safely say that I kind of appreciate Léger’s latest collections, because I can feel the purpose is different: it looks like the most recent collections haven’t been designed specifically for starlets. There’s much more attention to details, innovative materials and decorations, and the introduction of some new shapes, too. For once, the sexy card is not overtly played and some romantic subtlety comes out.
It certainly comes out in the advertising campaign by Camilla Åkrans , starring Olga Sherer, who perfectly embodies the spirit of the collection. I’ve never seen Léger collections as romantic, but this one actually is: the colour palette is based on neutral shades, such as powder pink, beige and nude; sleek lines are paired to ruffles and an interesting shape – the panier skirt – is introduced. This atmosphere is emphasized by the campaign, set in an ancient mansion, where the background is often made of flowers (roses in full bloom and lilies), as in the picture above.
The picture above is set in the same situation as the previous one – damask-upholstered sofa and flowers. Here, Olga is wearing Isabelle, a bandage and organza corset dress in Adobe, a gorgeous pink sand shade.
Roses, part of a marble sculpture and a fire-place appear in this beautiful shot, where the model is wearing one of the most interesting styles of the collection. The bandage technique – so typical of Léger – can be found in the bodice only; the skirt has a lovely panier shape with ruffles.
A similar dress is featured in the shot above, where the setting is a hall decorated by marble on the walls and a huge crystal chandelier. The colours dominating the setting are neutral, as well, with some touches of slight decay.
The first dress is Francesca, made of perforated leather and bandage fabric, while the second is Sofia, a bandage and organza cut-out panier dress in English Rose, a delicate rose shade. I’m glad the model in the campaign didn’t wear the first dress with those hideous leggings .
A view from above for this shot, where recurring elements – the sofa (in this case, covered with satin) and some flowers – can be found.
Olga is wearing Meriam, a classic bandage dress with mesh inserts. The colour is Dune, a silvery light brown.
I love the shots above, which have the same setting (the hall with the huge chandelier) but different framings. In this case, the lighting of the scene has a warm quality and this creates an interesting contrast with the cold shade of the dress.
Bella, a printed bandage panier dress in Silver, has some details in common with Francesca – the panier shape, emphasized by side ruffles. This is definitely one of my favourite pieces.
The beautiful shot above – I love the lighting effect, focusing on the model – features a very original dress. It’s a simple sheath dress, but the fabric used turns it into a work of art.
The shot above gives a closer look at the dress, apparently made of lace bands.
Hilary is actually made of bands with a rubber-print lace effect. Impressive, isn’t it?
The last shot of the campaign introduces one of the few long dresses of the collection. I’ve never cared for Léger long evening dresses much, because they’re usually quite predictable, but this is an exception to the rule. The dress is beautiful, but the prop used in the shot – the marble column – doesn’t convince me much, because it looks so artificial, since its only purpose is to support Olga’s elbow.
Marylin is a gown combining a strapless bandage corset and a long organza skirt embellished by ribbons; the colour is Papyrus, ivory with a yellowish/pink shade. The shape of the corset (see the lower part) is largely inspired to Vivienne Westwood trademark corset, but I appreciate the boning effect, achieved with the bandage technique, in the piece by Léger.
Both the collection and the campaign are not groundbreaking – we agree on that, I think – but they represent a new phase in the brand history and, as such, must be welcomed.