‘I saw the Dr Doolittle film from the 1960s, and I just loved the way the men were dressed – their outfits seemed so perfect,’ explained Anna Sui before her mod circus themed spring/summer 2010 show.
‘Dr Doolittle was set in 1830s, but filtered through a 1960s perspective, so there is a cool mod aesthetic going on.’ And a cool, youth-driven mod aesthetic is exactly what Sui, this year’s CFDA Lifetime Achievement Award recipient, sent out for spring in spades. Pop multi-colour floral and check wide-sleeved shirts and dresses in wild colour combinations paired with vests took centre stage as circus music played, interrupted by 1960s classics by The Who and The Kinks. Shimmering, iridescent fabrics in yellow, orange and red, with either a gold or silver base, took shape as pretty dresses with drop waists, or shifts with ruffles and puff sleeves, and ringmaster’s hats and jackets with fringed epaulettes added a little theatre.
‘There’s a vintage vibe with a little rock’n’roll thrown in, but always ultra-feminine,’ Sui said of her aesthetic in general. ‘There’s an ambiguity to my designs – a good girl, bad girl thing that girls can relate to. Everything I create has to address this vibe and spirit.’ For spring, the Anna Sui girl was certainly on her best behaviour – the collection, featuring happily clashing prints and bold colour, pushed a refreshing wholesome and carefree approach to the new season.