While Lisbon is objectively a ways away from making it onto any #FashionCapitals list, Portuguese designers provided some of the more conceptually poignant fare on the fall-winter 2016 European runways circuit. Lisbon Fashion Week is a platform of choice for designer Ricardo Andrez who singlehandedly puts his hometown Porto onto #PostParisFashion map. Andrez is garnering a reputation for slightly off-kilter styling and curious structural subtleties. This collection was labelled TALL and “subtitled” with Fever Ray lyrics: “When I grow up, I want to be a forester / Run through the moss on high heels / That’s what I’ll do, throwing out boomerang / Waiting for it to come back to me.” The theme of anticipation, daydreaming and wish-granting is evident in the connect-the-dots prints, the oversize pockets at times spanning entire calf or thigh length, the multiple pouch-belts, the soft focus of the gender composite. This is what to wear as you become your next self. The sweaters, cropped halfway up (!) or with a moon-shaped bite at the hem, are delightful. Cntr, Alt, Wishlist. The color blocking invokes the moody sea and the dune-strung rugged coastline of northern Portugal. We’ve seen audacious styling wreck an otherwise noteworthy show before (Toronto TOM*), so I gotta praise backstage creative team of Nelson Vieira and Ricardo Pedro for pulling off a striking bald look that worked as an enhancement and not an attention heist. “Crab claws and bottles of rum / That’s what I’ll have staring at the seashell / Waiting for it to embrace me” … I’ma pop a cork on a dusty bottle of vinho do Porto to salute the already-and-future wonderfulness of Ricardo Andrez.

I love the simple whimsy of the collection’s look-book as well! Check out also my wholehearted reviews of Catarina Oliveira, Dino Alves and best-in-show Nuno Gama from Lisbon Fashion Week. Then follow Moda Lisboa on Instagram & Facebook

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