S/S 2018 Miss Hanoi: La Douleur Exquise
Tiara by Tracy Dizon Spring Summer 2018 Millinery Collection
The designs in this collection is a coalescence of a personal experience and the abundant stimuli present in a locale where the traditional blends seamlessly with the modern, the austere with the lavish, the West with the East, and the patriotic with the individualistic. Coming from the perspective of a Southeast Asian—foreign yet familiar—it is a celebration of an encounter with a culture that shares affinity with the designer’s own, on one hand, but with a wealth of all things novel and new, on the other. The designer’s gaze in framing Vietnam is of central importance in crafting a set of looks that exhibits both a visitor’s take on the local culture and at the same time attempts to rediscover links and connections. Roaming the streets of Hanoi during a memorable recent adventure, the designer draws inspiration from the common sights of the city: souvenir items and curiosities, flora, porcelain, consumer culture, traditional attire, signage, and the ubiquitous presence of national consciousness. Elements from these diverse sources are woven into creations that appear very much reflective of the local culture and that constantly adapts to the rapidly changing times of the global era. Here, we see the traditional Ao Dai dress transformed and reworked into casual pieces that reveal a range of moods and personalities, from subtle elegance and grace, to confident and adventurous chic. Each piece is like a slice of Hanoi life, and by extension, Vietnam as a whole.
In the variety of looks featured in the collection, an anonymous girl surfaces, a persona which the designer calls with a generic title, Ms. Hanoi, through which the entire collection is anchored. Who is this mysterious girl behind every piece? She can be anyone, a random girl in the streets, her sensibilities and personal style shaped by the locale which is Hanoi.