Western fashion has long held a fascination with ancient Eastern style. Such an attraction is apparent in the SS13 Unttld collection, a magnificent interpretation of Asia’s fashion blueprint by Montreal designers José Manuel St-Jacques and Simon Bélanger.

Taking its cue from a mélange of traditional Eastern fashions (with the art of haikus being the collection’s base inspiration), looks have been repurposed into pieces with city chic sensibilities. See last week’s runway show, where the silver, razor-sharp fingernails painted on Unttld models looked so they might rival the precarious claws used in traditional Thai dance.

The classic pairing of black on black achieved a stunning effect on the runway by way of a suit of strong, voluminous day and evening looks in noir. Equally as impressive: Kimono like jackets wrapped in patent belts, matched with sheer, floor length skirts and dresses.

There is a soft sexiness to Unttld’s SS13 collection; fine cuts and loose draping speak to the allure of a woman’s back, while pleated copper pieces — each a standout — shimmer with cinematic beauty. Focusing on a colour scheme of black, forest green and white, the season’s preferred patterns have been all together forfeited in favour of sleek design. The simplicity and fluidity of pieces comes alive in the juxtaposition of transparent fabrics with opaques as seen at last week’s World MasterCard Fashion Week show. Overall, the subtlety of the design and details in the label’s latest work is a departure from the fitted silhouette seen as last season’s Mercedes Benz Start Up show — a design evolution were excited to see.

Truly a collection where Eastern design meet Western styling in a progressive marriage, it is proof of the bright future of the Unttld label.

Unttld SS13

Published October 30, 2012