TAKEN TO CHURCH: Joao Paulo Guedes

Any collection “inspired by Gothic churches” runs the risk of spiraling into Mall-ready kitschwear. I should have had more faith in Canada’s Emerging Menswear Designer Award winner, Joao Paulo Guedes. After all, the man tamed Bollywood & Carnival in a single look. For his fall-winter 2015 collection at TOM*, Guedes rearranges stain-glass windows into a crushed kaleidoscope of (un)answered prayers and places them as off-center cupolas… What a Sunday delight!

Not every thing was a godsend. The single zipper jackets and coats did not resonate even if their architectural blueprint roots were readable. The high-waste-belting was less monk-ish, more just awkward. You win some, you lose some, but you gotta keep the faith. The golden shoes were papal enough to carry any Messenger forward. And that black shirt could very well be the only cross reference I’d allow in my wardrobe (wishlist!)

Choice of maroon for the final looks was brilliant as this shade seemed to metaphorically absorb the density of the light within temples and the intensity of bloody histories of the Church as well as the twilight color of personal doubts. When Guedes took his bow, I wanted to bow right back. The bearded unicorn inside of me recognizes your logo within. Amen.  Joao Paulo Guedes (7)

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