Photos by George Pimentel
In the back of my musty brain, there lies a fashion rule that you shouldn’t wear vintage if you are vintage. In other words, if you were around for a trend the first time it was in fashion, stay far, far away. I’m here to tell you that that rule is straight up malarkey. But don’t just take it from me. MIZ by Izzy Camilleri, the inaugural show of World MasterCard Fashion Week, took some serious liberties with that rule, presenting a thoroughly retro 1960s-inspired collection for their target demographic of “mature, boomer age women.”
Camilleri gave a nod to mod, showing mostly black and white clothing peppered with houndstooth patterns. Even the model’s hairdos were bichromatic, styled in Cruella Deville-coloured beehives. It was the ideal wardrobe for Tippi Hedren in The Birds, if she had a penchant for leather paneling. The collection featured plenty of tuxedo pants, boxy shift dresses and luscious curve-defining pencil skirts. There was plenty of garments to lust after for both Joan Holloway and Betty Draper too. Namely, a camel circle skirt with a nipped in waist paired with a leather cape.
Capes were a mainstay, coming through in all shapes and sizes. The most ingenious details of the whole collection were sleeves designed to look like mini capes. The full monty cape was an exaggerated full-length number in a silvery brocade fabric, paired with matching trousers. Camilleri is an expert in outerwear: all the flashbulbs in the photography pit went nuts over a very mod black swing coat with a single row of exaggerated buttons.
You could barely tell the collection was supposed to be for “mature boomer-age women,” because the clothes were way cooler than anything my mom would wear. The first model of the night was an older woman, whose natural grey hair was super refreshing to see on the runway. MIZ actively demonstrated that their clothing works for women of all ages, rather than just than a subtle nod to their target demographic in the press packet. The only miniscule clue the collection was aimed at older women were the sleeves– cut long and with ample room.
MIZ felt very current, drawing in influences from the 90s Calvin Klein minimalism that has infiltrated the fashion world, slashing extraneous ruffles left and right. Izzy Camilleri managed to capture a moment in fashion, except that moment is already happening. The collection almost felt like a response to current trends: good for the present moment but lacking the extraordinary vision that constantly pushes fashion into new and dangerous territory.
Still, I was revitalized by the diversity of models on the runway and excited by the cape-centric collection. It was an energetic kickoff to World MasterCard Fashion Week, and now I’m ready to rumble. Let the games, er, shows begin!
Isabel Slone is a Toronto-based fashion blogger and writer. Follow her on Twitter at @isabelslone.