To view the full Altuzarra Pre-Fall 2018 collection, click here.
A-L-T-U-Z-A-R-R-A. It’s not hard, kids. Yes, there are a whopping nine letters, and yes, there’s a Z and a double R (which this writer knows from personal experience can cause some problems), but Joseph Altuzarra’s surname (and brand name) is essentially phonetic. However, grammar school ain’t what it used to be, and apparently, the designer has encountered more than a few creative spellings over the years. “No one can spell our name,” he laughed at the debut of his Pre-Fall 2018 collection yesterday morning. “Or they can’t differentiate us from [Italian footwear label] Aquazzura.” It’s funny because it’s true. And while having one’s name spelled incorrectly is irksome, the enduring mishap inspired some fabulous logo-ified Pre-Fall prints and accessories.
For starters, the belts, which were often shown doubled up, came with Altuzarra spelled in metal grommets. The designer also complied what he described as “the best misspellings of our name,” and turned them into a cheeky t-shirt, which I was promised will be accessibly priced. That list was also used as a lighthearted allover print, seen on a sweet short-sleeved dress (which was not included in the lookbook), and a detail on the inside of a military-style jacket.
Elsewhere, Altuzarra played with artful, outsized leopard spots (used for linings, a smashing cashmere coat, and the print on one of his popular scarf dresses), clever reversible outerwear, hand-painted florals (which the designer dreamt up this summer while in his garden), and subtle ruffles. The latter provided a feminine contrast to the military elements used throughout. Vintage carpets influenced the Quaker-style patterns seen on long skirts and belted jackets, and the final dress, a lingerie-inspired black lace number with blue beading, radiated the brand’s signature, sophisticated sex appeal.
Also worth noting is the fact that the Pre-Fall lookbook was shot by up-and-comer Natalie Fong, whom Altuzarra met while judging a fashion competition at Parsons. Lensed at the designer’s serene Hamptons home, the collection imagery echoes the romanticism of the well-rounded, transitional outing. Oh, and here’s hoping this season’s little spelling lesson sticks.