“Kindred spirits are not so scarce as I used to think. It’s splendid to find out there are so many of them in the world.” ― L.M. Montgomery, Anne of Green Gables
If you haven’t as yet worked me out then I’ll give you a clue by pointing in the direction of a black sheep and quietly whispering in your ear “look, a kindred spirit”. It’s not that… To paraphrase Greta Garbo… “I want to be alone”. No, far from it! And to the contrary of what Anne of Green Gables said, I just don’t often come across people who I have a lot in common with or, are as passionate as I am about the same things. Rather, I find kindred spirits to be somewhat uncommon and so, when I do make their acquaintance, as such is the case with the discovery of any rare and precious object, I want to show it off to the world.
Such was my reaction upon an introduction to the fashion designer Michael Hekmat; a true perfectionist who incorporates a lot of time on research with an uncompromising eye for detail, along with extensive knowledge of textiles and fabrics, and who I only recently met but knew within the first few minutes into our conversation that he definitely was someone who is a kindred spirit and that he is someone who I wanted to write about.
For those of you involved in the fashion industry, Michael Hekmat probably needs no introduction. A graduate of the prestigious Instituto Marangoni University in Milan, he’s worked closely with such designers and brands as Vivienne Westwood in London and Proenza Schouler in NYC. He was the senior designer for Giambattista Valli in Paris and now designs under his own name with an atelier in Warsaw, which is where I had the chance to see his AW2016/17 collection up close.
I fell in love with his designs so much that when I left the atelier, it was with half of his collection in my bag. Just to clarify, I didn’t steal anything, Michael kindly let me borrow some of my favourite pieces that I could get a real feel for the clothes, be photographed in them and share the results with all of you. What can I say except that It’s Beyond My Control! 🙂
The AW2016/17 collection is very luxurious, classic, minimal in a sense, with a lot of reference to the glamorous, rather than the cheesy flower-power 60s hangover end of the 70s aesthetic which it is in part inspired by. It’s definitely a collection for a strong, confident woman who knows her style and doesn’t waste precious time on current trends, that will change with a blink of an eye and be last season before you know it. As Coco Chanel once said, “Fashion fades, only style remains the same.”
Michael Hekmat has somehow managed to find the perfect balance between the glamorous and every day with designs that are as timeless as the 1940s and Victorian clothes that I collect or as rarified as an Art Deco bracelet bought at Bonhams auction house. These unique and precious objects will never go out of style.
If I had to describe the AW2016/17 collection in a few words it would be; luxury with a vintage twist. Immaculate tailoring on the woollen trousers and coat with a vintage fox fur details on the arms (I wear only faux fur but since it was authentic vintage fur I made an exception), was the quintessence of luxury and style and with the right accessory (vintage of course) could be dressed up or down depending on the occasion. The ecru, aubergine, black and powerful red were the dominant palette and so it happens a perfect marriage of colours.