Get Dressed/ Designers
Kristin Booker • February 20, 2012

Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Runway Recap: Vivienne Tam Fall 2012 Collection

Photo: Matteo Volta and Image courtesy of

One of the main reasons I’m such a huge fan of Vivienne Tam‘ is the exuberance and joy with which she creates a whole other world with her clothing. She’s influenced by her Chinese heritage, her love of technology, her eye for pop culture and the world around us and a keen sense of design. Every season when you come into Tam’s presentation, you’re transported into her vision of the world and it’s always a magical place. This season it was nothing short of spectacular.

DYING FOR THIS LOOK. Photo: Matteo Volta and Image courtesy of

Set against a gorgeous dark backdrop, Tam descripd her collection as “Shangri-La Remix” and the merging of city modern wardrobe staples with the textures, hues and fabrics of the Himalayan culture was a sight to behold. The color palette was raw and dazzling from the beginning, using cherry wood, toasted apricot, deep teal and burnt sienna to great effect as a play between natural elements and modern city hues like ice water blue, cream, sand and black.

Photo: Matteo Volta and Image courtesy of

The silhouettes were always balanced – oversized coats played nicely with impeccably-cut skinny pants, boxy jackets paired with slim sheaths. Each piece was a study in mastery, with the dragon appearing as embellishment on everything from a dress to the fabric of faux fur-lined jackets.

Photo: Matteo Volta and Image courtesy of

Tam’s heritage was on incredible display here, showing throughout the collection with visually stunning appeal and played well with tiny blanket stripes and other graphic motifs. She brought her Western influences in to simply add framework to her art – a camel coat, luxe tweed trousers, wool skinny pants. What I loved so much was the influence of jacquard to ultra-feminine pieces. What looked to be men’s necktie fabric suddenly became pencil skirts and skinny pants. I almost died over the look in the second photo – er, actually ALL the photos. I will have to sell my worldly possessions to get this exact look, but you mark my words – that look and many like it from this collection WILL BE MINE.

Caution: jacket might cause fainting. Photo: Matteo Volta and Image courtesy of

One of the pleasures in watching Tam’s collection come down the runway is that you can feel the joy and optimism that exudes from her clothing. When patterns that seem to have never been thought to pair have come together, it’s almost like Tam introducing friends at a party that, once combined, can’t image how they lived without each other. Her glee in showing us what can be with her clothes is what makes her so much more than just a mere designer.

Photo: Matteo Volta and Image courtesy of

She makes the world a better place with her clothes, that her pieces are smiling at you from inside your closet. From her mongolian collars to her gleeful use of rich hues and textures that seem to want to give you a hug before you step outside to conquer the world, Vivienne Tam wants you to find the joy in life with her clothing. With this Fall 2012 collection, you can see how you can do just that.


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