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  • Writer's picturemaya kotomori

ATB - Shame 2023

Updated: Feb 14

Everything was beautiful at the ballet, I was the ballet

Shame is tragic, it's elegant, it's simple. This sentiment reflects both the word "shame" and how I feel about Ramona Beattie and Pablo Pina Otano's collection of the same name (Shame). God I love assonance.

Ok, I will start from the beginning. First look: my immediate thoughts were all about that yummy millinery!! The velvet equestrian hat is gorgeous, chin straps are back and I am very happy about that. Ok now to this gorgeous flannel-y looking wool set - like a torn back set of long johns with all this embellishing, from this subtle and dramatic silver hardware to the shoulder accents made of HAIR. Jury is out on whether or not it is human hair sourced from like a friend's haircut/errant weave or a trusty pack of Kanekalon. Regardless I love how soft this material looks, I love the zip on the cowl neck, I love the cut-up arm cuffs. Yay.

The bottoms give. Gorgeous knit, half longjohn half bikini/hot pant? We're seeing a very common reference to dancers with that stirrup, we have a seam going down the front of the long leg. I love these two particular details together with a return of the hardware on the jacket. I must say thought, the styling of the shirting underneath with the uncuffed cuff felt a little unnecessary to the look to me, it didn't contribute as much as it distracted. Like this collection did not feel styled for style's sake, and the cuffs kind of throw me!

What did I say about chinstraps. Yeah. So we have this gorgeous shirt with little layers on the torso where darts traditionally go on traditional Oxford shirting, that detail is gorgeous. The boa tie, we will talk about the importance of feathers in the collection in a minute but the shirt on top of the deconstructed shirt-skirt...yeah. I am deeply bothered by a lot of deconstructed things however this skirt with the collar turned on its side like a protrusion from the body, creating a structured hole to reveal the skin. Yeah that's real good. Also clocked that this look was styled with an A.F Vandevorst stiletto boot which like of course it is, great job.

The hair-shoulders are great. You know, my personal taste is against a naked model as an objective win so this is not scratching an itch for me. I will say this styling does point to something very important with the construction of this jacket. Consider this cuff:

I love this cuff, I love the way it makes hands look, I love the way the seam snakes diagonally to the front of the arm as a detail, I think this is a true masterful element to this jacket that honestly? We need to see more like this!! Also the knit panty/hotshort situation reminds me of these knit shorts my friend Reece gave me like 3 years ago and now I need to tailor mine so they can look just like these fun Shame shorts. Shame-orts. I also love the belt buckle that's almost like a signet ring. Big smooth monolith yes.

Showcasing the hotshort, showcasing a shoulder pad?! With the return of the equestrian hat??? With that same silver detailing???? Ok so we had seen the feather stuffed in a stiletto, we had seen the feather boa as a tie, and now we see a feather as demurely covering this model's breasts. I love the attitude this look connotes, I truly appreciate it as a finale to everything that came prior, it puts it all into context in a very cohesive way. And it's fun.

We had tragedy, elegance, and simplicity, not always in the most effective ways to me but Shame had a mission and it very clearly accomplished it. All in all: I liked this collection, it's cohesive, and it has a lot of fun with the language it creates with the wool, jersey, silver hardware, hotshorts, those signet belts. I didn't bother to really talk about the graphic just because a brand-name graphic tee isn't really in my purview of things I care about (although the burned-in 'shame' across the chest of those tees was a fresher choice than most). I know the brand sells its own patterns (rare and cool) so we (consumers) can buy and fashion our own clothes, and I really want a pattern for that first look and the hotshort. I think that Shame responds to a particular flavor of people in NYC, all of whom were in attendance which is very cool, and I think this collection does a great job at further outlining that point of view, that crowd, that language. Go Shame!

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