The Haves & Have Nots of Fashion

There’s nothing new about maximalism. But certainly, it’s been getting its fair share of attention as of late, and seems to be more in favor with the fashion world, thanks to Alessandro Michele’s revival of Gucci and his eclectic more is more aesthetic.

It’s been hard not to notice that fashion designers appear to be divided into two distinct camps these days: the haves and the have nots. And by that I mean, they have either embraced maximalism, or they have not. But even if, like Miuccia Prada, they are not die hard minimalists, and may schizophrenically go back and forth between the two (sometimes within the same collection), in general, the ‘battle lines’ are drawn and continue to be more pronounced.

To best illustrate this ongoing polarity, I thought I would take some of fashion’s most popular items and show two versions. One that is stripped down, streamlined to its purist form; the other: more fanciful, embellished, and decorative.

Be sure to click on images for full size views!

The Baseball Jacket

Rag & Bone Resort 2017 & Gucci Resort 2017
(All photos


Valentino Resort 2017 & Thom Browne Resort 2017


Helmut Lang Resort 2017 & Dsquared2 Fall 2016 rtw

The Bustier Gown

Thom Browne Evening & Undercover Fall 2016 rtw

The Tuxedo

Saint Laurent Fall Winter 2016 rtw & Gucci Fall 2016 rtw


Valentino Resort Alexander & McQueen Resort 2017

Mixed Prints

Tibi Resort 2017 mixed prints & Moschino Resort 2017


Tibi Resort 2017 & Moschino Resort 2017

The Houndstooth Coat

Salvatore Ferragamo Fall 2016 rtw &  Dolce & Gabbana Fall 2016 rtw

 The Black Sheer Lingerie Inspired Dress

Norma Kamali Resort 2017 Black Slip Dress & Alexander McQueen Resort 2017

The Ivory Wool Pollover

Jil Sander Navy Fall 2016 rtw & Delpozo Fall 2016 rtw

The Long Leather Glove

Delpozo Fall 2016 rtw & Delpozo Fall 2016 rtw

And finally, with the passing of Bill Cunningham fresh on on my mind, I would feel remiss if I didn’t make the observation that he was a man blessed not only with a maximum talent, but with a minimum ego.

Marilyn Kirschner

I am a long time fashion editor with 40+ years of experience. As senior market of Harper's Bazaar for 21 years I met and worked with every major fashion designer in the world and covered all of the collections in Paris, London, Milan and New York. I was responsible for overall content, finding and pulling in the best clothes out there, and for formulating ideas and stories.

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