Layers by Jennifer Dares - fall/winter 2004

Mauve, purple, charcoal and smoky-mountain blue are the conspirators that work together to create Layers’ sober fall 2004 collection. Streamlined two-piece suits consisting of slim pants and suit jackets offer different looks, each with the same commitment to slenderness. On the straight-cut jackets there is enough sleeve and shoulder movement to keep an athletic edge.

The off-centre tulip neck is very de rigeur right now, and Layers does it with class, departing from the V-neck but maintaining the same neat cut. The label offers more than racy business-casual-a batwing-sleeved sheer chiffon dress makes that point rather clearly, with the added luxury of a fur shrug. The stretch-cotton dress with wool sleeve cuffs is a winner for the diverse textures it brings together.

There are other details that rock the collection, such as the surprisingly unobtrusive harness straps that serve to cordon off the outfits in a rather medieval way. Other additions, such as the belt-loop motif, weren’t so successful. While a major feature of the collection, they did more to distract than to harmonize.

Daniel Cox, Fashion Editor
Marek Wlazlo, Photographer