At the intersection of romance and chaos lies Caroline Hu. In her F/W 2023 RTW collection, Hu represents the romanticization of life. Heavily inspired by the falling leaves and petals she saw when she finally returned to Paris after years of being away, her designs offer a different take on the common themes of nature and florals in fashion. The style of these pieces combines innovation with her own philosophies, which she calls “a delicate path between romanticism and pandemonium.”
Source: Vogue Runway
In many ways, this collection is a love letter to nature. Florals can easily feel overdone and boring, but Caroline Hu makes them interesting. Instead of using floral printed fabric the way many designers would, nearly every flower in Hu’s collection is a 3D structure.
Dark flowers appear to be hanging onto the dress by a thread. In a way, audiences are given the idea that they could reach out and pluck one right off the fabric. The distressed fabric works with the black, down-facing blossoms to create a narrative. When you look at this piece, it is autumn, nature is in a state of chaos and every last leaf will soon be fallen. Caroline Hu is able to depict this with just one dress.
Source: Vogue Runway
In juxtaposition to the last piece, these dresses symbolize a more optimistic, light side of nature. With vibrantly colored flowers, these pieces embody springtime and allow models to appear like part of the bouquet itself. The 3D flowers are attached to an underlay which is then wrapped in sheer fabric. By using textured flowers instead of a simple floral-printed fabric, Hu gives depth to these pieces. They are so different from what you would expect from floral dresses, and the innovative nature of the designs set it apart from everything else that we are seeing in fashion right now.
When you hear that a collection of designs were inspired by nature, there are a myriad of things you might expect. But Caroline Hu managed to take something so common and make it so unique. The artistry of these pieces allow it to stand out from everything around it. When you look at these dresses, you can feel the love that Hu has for nature and for the world. If you have not been paying attention to Caroline Hu in the past, it may be time to start.