For those already familiar with the Thierry Mugler aesthetic, his choice of David Koma as artistic director makes perfect sense. The 28-year-old designer has proven himself to be very adept and creative with close-fitting, feminine forms, something for which the Mugler label is well known. In presenting his first spring/summer collection for the house, Koma puts to ease any fear that the youngster might take off in a more drastic direction. Today’s presentation fit in quite well with the Mugler tradition and is likely to be warmly received.

I don’t understand the whole swimsuit under a suit thing. He does better with it than did Julien David earlier this week, but it’s still not a look that makes any sense to anyone over 30. We’re not getting too older for Mugler, are we?

Well, maybe. Keeping the line young, vital and fresh is something of a mandate at the house. Inevitably, that’s going to mean an occasional style that those of us who are older just don’t think works. Are we wrong? No. Are they right? Maybe.

Other than the swimsuit thing, though, there really are no great surprises in this collection. Yes, it’s fitted. We saw that coming. Hemlines run mid-thigh to mid-calf. No surprise there. Cut outs pop up all over the place; because we would be disappointed if they didn’t. Sheer panels, an occasional plunging neckline and masculine tailored suits all came down the catwalk on cue. There were no gasps of excitement, no startled expressions, just the calm reassurance that, yes, this is Mugler and yes, not a lot has changed just yet.

One nice detail point worth mentioning are the places where David weaves strands of leather through the fabric. He doesn’t do it too often, but when it does it is a really nice finishing touch that elevates the sense of luxury. And luxury is extremely important to this house, which is why the whole swimsuit thing strikes me as a bit curious. All the clothes are so finely tailored (Koma still had styling pins on his sleeve after the show) and the fabrics so carefully chosen that the swimsuit look really seems to pull down the luxe level a bit.

We’re still probably a season or two away from seeing just how much leniency Koma is given in applying his own tastes and looks to the Mugler line. Thierry is still very involved and watching very closely, so nothing we see this season steps out of line. Clothes are feminine, clean-lined, and lean. Thierry Mugler wouldn’t have it any other way.

Photo credit: Anna Palermo


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