Venexiana, designed by Kati Stern, is known for theatrics and flamboyance but this A/W 2012 collection was a pitiful exercise in garish overindulgence.
Like a dog that’s all bark with no bite, the collection was a lot of glitter and noise with little sartorial substance. The collection had neither the sophistication or true daring of the couture collection that Stern hopes Venexiana will one day be.
It is painfully obvious, with her sweeping trains, bouffanted shoulders, use (or shall I say overuse) of metallics that Stern badly wants Venexiana to be the next Marchesa of glamorous eveningwear. However, this show, which marks Venexiana’s seventh year, still lacks refinement and may expose Stern’s stagnation as a designer, unable to elevate her clothing to the next level.
Some subtlety and cleaner, sleeker cuts could have helped. At least two models almost tripped on the poorly executed monster skirts, overloaded with taffeta and other bulk, gracelessly devouring the runway like bulls on parade. Some editing of the collection to its stronger pieces could have made the Venexiana show less of an eyesore but alas every hit on the runway was followed by five misses. Stern most ably worked her way with black lace in some darkly seductive mini-dresses. However, with few exceptions, much of the Venexiana collection looked more senior prom than red carpet and desperately needed more maturity in form, color and structure.
Most horrendous were her unoriginal tube top dresses, with a hot pink corset top sewn to a frilly black maxi skirt being the worst, looking incredibly cheap and immature like a trashed Forever21 design. As the poor model who wore this disaster of a dress slinked down the runway, it was bizarre thinking this indeed was a New York Fashion week show, with so many designs by Venexiana unworthy of such a prestigious limelight.