Michael van der Ham’s bold touch

‘Someone who’s not afraid to wear something a little more bold’ is how Michael van der Ham describes his customer. True to his word, that’s exactly the kind of woman the Dutch designer catered to at his spring 2012 catwalk show at London fashion week. We’re not talking bold in a gimmicky or trashy way though. In essence these were unchallenging pieces – straight knee length skirts, T dresses, cigarette pants, all in silky fabrics – but they each had an element that lifted them out of the ordinary.

In a lot of cases this was conveyed in the prints, graphic irregular splurges of 2-D patchwork that differed on the top and bottom halves of an ensemble. Colour was another defining factor. Van der Ham had a tendency to wax and wane between dark for winter and light for summer (editors, I imagine, love this pattern) and so it continued: a base of ivory was augmented with saturated bursts of royal blue, jade green and violet, and pants were split vertically – one colour on the front, another at the back.

Elsewhere, texture came into play with sharp brocade jackets and cropped pants. On a couple of stand-out frocks a swathe of fabric was draped freely from shoulder to hem and gathered at the waist: a perfect example of van der Ham’s bold touch applied with subtle precision.

For the full runway coverage of Michael van der Ham‘s spring / summer 2012 collection, click on the thumbnails above.