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Monday, September 26, 2005

Claude Montana

Claude Montana rose to fashion prominence in the 1970s by designing leather clothing with exaggerated masculine lines for women. He started his menswear line in 1979, and did an award-winning but financially disastrous two-year stint designing for Lanvin in the early 1990s. I am fascinated by overlapping geometric mosaics, and the freeform shapes on this tie make it one of the most fascinating of all. The angular jacquard weave (made possible by the Jacquard loom, arguably the first data processing machine) has strong mechanical overtones and presents an interesting contrast to the fluidity of the printed design. The bold color scheme is pure whimsy, but also confounding; it took me quite some time to figure out which pants and shirt to wear with it. After several false starts, I ended up matching (or approximating) the reds with the shirt and the blues (or near-blues, they're more silver, really) with the pants. What an effort--I'll go with something easier tomorrow.

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