On Oct. 8, Custo Barcelona revealed its Fall 2010 and Spring/Summer 2011 collections at its SoHo showroom in New York City.
The Spanish fashion house, known for its over-the-top pieces and incredible use of color, had both of the collections on display for editors, bloggers and stylists alike. Those who were privileged to see the clothing up close observed aqua and pink jumpsuits, fringed leather skirts and jackets crafted from a variety of materials.
Following its dazzling show at New York Fashion Week, Custo Barcelona proved again why it is one of the most influential forces in fashion.
On the racks that evening were amazing arrays of clothing, each garment bolder and brighter than the next. For attendees, sitting up close made taking a longer look at the collections a lot easier than the view afforded on the runway. That runway, though, was met with rousing applause when the models finished skipping down it – the only way to describe how one feels when dressed head-to-toe in Custo.
Ty-Ron Mayes, the top New York stylist, was on hand to peruse the collections. Mayes isn’t shy about what a fan he is of Custo clothes.
“Unlike most designers, Custo has such an unusual, eclectic aesthetic,” Mayes said. “What I particularly love about his clothing are the colors, patterns and unexpected combination of texture that you don’t see with any other designer. All of his pieces are memorable.”
Mayes has worked in the business for close to two decades, at both domestic and international fashion and lifestyle magazines. He revealed that in the process he has pulled Custo Barcelona clothing for multiple fashion shoots:
“Each shoot that involves a Custo Barcelona piece is always outstanding because it’s truly like photographing ‘wearable art.’ It remains timeless as years go by,” Mayes said. “As a Custo collector, I find that I can build on his pieces season after season.”
The Spring/Summer 2011 collection, titled “Fantasy and Reality,” tied together the fantasy of fashion with the reality of the street, a happy marriage that resulted in a fantastical mix of textures, colors and fabric.
Who is the man behind the label? Custo Dalmau, a native of Spain, who, along with his brother David, started the company in the early ‘80s, designing in the spirit of a colorful style he saw in the country’s culture. The work produced by this creative genius each year since truly knows no bounds.
Custo clearly does not follow trends.
Mayes has been lucky enough to meet the designer in person – a thrill for any stylist.
“I have gotten a chance to meet Custo several times and interviewed him for my upcoming webzine,” Mayes said. “I found him to be a very smart, talented, soulful individual who has a full grasp of his point of view and how to sell that aesthetic to the masses.”
Custo Barcelona’s pieces are not for the faint of heart. The fashions sell best in resort areas and sunny locales, places where people feel more free and uninhibited. The collection is carried in 80 stores in 30 countries, and shows in both Berlin and New York: Berlin because it’s a central European location and New York because of its global reach and exposure.
Even though the clothing in Custo Barcelona’s collections looks luxurious, it’s not unattainable. A typical pair of leggings costs $39, and one of the more highly embellished coats of the fall collection comes in at $368.
Minerva Arboleya, director of communications for ASI Marketing Group, the firm that works with Custo Barcelona in New York and Los Angeles, was on hand to greet the fashion cognoscenti and had something to say about Custo customers.
“The women who buy Custo fashion are followers, not just fans,” said Arboleya. “They want something different. Things that are very ‘Custo’ tend to fly off the racks most. Women have to have it.”