News & Runway

John Galliano Spring 2012 Runway Review

The problem with having longtime Galliano right-hand Bill Gaytten take over the John Galliano label is that there isn’t the heritage quality that there is with Dior. Large fashion houses have designers come and go but with a relatively new signature label, there isn’t the archive to fall back on. Galliano’s inspiration was organic but ephemeral; Gaytten may have scoured the John Galliano archives but the collection was lacking that intrinsic sense of drama that we look for in a John Galliano collection. While at Dior, we were placated by a collection that ticked all the requisite boxes, the John Galliano brand would need a clear new voice to make it through this time and Gaytten just doesn’t have it.

Mary Pickford and Mary Poppins apparently inspired the show but it’s clear to see that the notion wasn’t sincere. It was suggested that Gaytten would be the Sarah Burton of the Galliano brand but where Burton took her cues from Alexander McQueen following his death and carved her own path, Gaytten seems to hide behind his predecessor. The daywear was strained and looked like a forced manipulation of fabric but the eveningwear held a bit more hope; unfortunately, we missed the wow-factor that comes with dramatic innovation. It was diet-Galliano and that wasn’t enough to impress.