Ljubljana Fashion Week 2020
Our FreeŠn contest winner Žiga Kuhel attended LJFW, which this year took place at MAO and underpass Ajdovščina in Ljubljana. A hybrid of live runway shows, live model art installations and art installations, Ljubljana Fashion Week took the Covid-19 situation and turned it innovative with new ways of presenting the latest collections of Slovenian designers. With appropriate precautions taken, the event took place in the first ten days of October. This is LJFW through Žiga’s eyes.
“Fashion is the armor to survive the reality of everyday life.”
Cunningham’s words flow perfectly with the role that fashion has in these uncertain times.
Fashion acts as a shield not only in everyday life, but more importantly in times of crisis. Continuing with the annual fashion week keeps us not only sane but also keeps the spirit of creativity alive.
The 12th Ljubljana’s Fashion Week, sadly this year only in A/W edition, was presented with ten days of various events. Conceptual fashion exhibitions, held amidst the audience at the busy Ajdovščina underpass in old display windows, gave passersby a chance to stop and get inspired by the collection on their everyday errands in the city center. It was also the perfect opportunity for the new-comers of the NTF faculty, majoring in textile and fashion design, to exhibit their collections, giving them a platform to slowly establish their name in the world of fashion.
The main venue of this year’s fashion week, the Museum of Architecture and Design (MAO), is not unknown amongst attendees of the fashion week, being last year’s location as well. MAO held the screening of five fashion films, two separate discussions with guests, and the highly anticipated runway shows, which took place on two separate nights, bringing us a total of 12 exceptional collections from an array of truly talented designers, some already recognized on the Slovenian market, whilst others completely new.
The atmosphere of this year’s venue somehow felt more prestigious and personal, since only a few guests were allowed in the main room of the runway, due to the health and safety guidelines. The runway, engulfed in the brightness of the spotlights, stretched through two rooms, giving the guests plenty of time to take in all of the creations. Music elevated the atmosphere, connecting all the garments into a unanimous collection.
12 autumnal collections, heavily based on womenswear, found themselves on the contrary spectrum between subdued, more wearable couture with the standard color palette and rebellious couture with collections stemming from playful colors and silhouette choices.
Valentina Kolander, the opener of the first runway show had the most rebellious and eccentric collection, using embroidered words on the clothing as well as embellishments on some of the looks and bold styling choices. Jona Bednjanec‘s color story and patterns were the night’s show stopper. Her knitwear collection unified both wearability and playfulness. As goes for the cohesiveness of the styling and clothing, the standouts were David Bacali‘s black monochrome collection, which contrasted elegantly with gold and silver-toned jewelry from Mancca‘s brand.
The second runway show started with a bang. Sofija Urumović, who also received the Digi Wow award for the best collection in public opinion gave us some unconventional silhouettes with some daring styling choices.
Styling on both runway shows was an absolute eye-catcher. Throughout all the looks on the runway, makeup complimented the outfits beautifully, with it being sharp mostly on the eyeshadow portion. while maintaining the freshness and crispness of the skin. It was a prime example of well-executed looks, but elevating them with that one bold element, making the creations of designers come to life.
This year’s fashion week will surely go down the history for its use of face masks. Not only it was mandatory for all the attendees, but some designers also incorporated them into their collection, showing that fashion always mirrors the state of society. The best incorporation of the face masks into the overall outfit has to go to Draž and their signature knitwear collection, who fused face masks with the look and made them part of the outfit.
The cluster of events presented by Ljubljana’s Fashion week made perfect sense with the present time, by not taking the current world situation as an obstacle, but rather as a strength. It made the designer’s creation accessible to the larger crowds, inspiring far more people. Big congratulations to all involved in the production of yet another successful LJFW.
Text: Žiga Kuhel
Photos: LJFW archive – Mimi Antolović, Jure Makovec