For the Maison Margiela Fall 2014 collection, the team took up British tweeds, filtering the codes of the male wardrobe through more feminine fare. A dress in striped suit lining became an underpinning for a lace-trimmed silk slip with a tweed back. Between the shoulder blades, the house’s familiar white cotton stitches were replaced with the iconic Harris Tweed logo. Along similar lines, a strapless checked flannel dress was designed to look like it had been constructed from trousers; the bustline was a waistband complete with a button closure, zip fly, and belt loops. On other looks, the tooled leather uppers of cordovan shoes morphed into dickeys, replacements for button-down shirts underneath knit sweaters and wool jackets.
Those dickeys had a nice perversity, but they were a visual pun dreamed up to produce an “aha, I get it” moment on the runway, rather than to actually be worn. Still, you won’t hear any arguments from us about the Harris Tweed tailoring. The Maison Martin Margiela team make some of the best in the business: classically and efficiently cut, but not without distinguishing details like the pagoda shoulders that Margiela himself used to favor. The pagoda shoulders carried over into the collection’s sweaters, the standout of which was a snug navy and cream riff on the Fair Isle.