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Text by Chris Clyde Green

Portugal Fashion is a significant date in the Porto Calendar. The event was presented once again at the imposing and historical Alfândega do Porto. Thousands of people (industry and public) gathered to see the Spring/Summer lines from arguably some of Portugal’s emerging and established designers.

The second day featured 19 catwalk shows and had the Alfândega bursting at the seams (10,000 plus people went through its doors). The atmosphere was buzzing and enticing.

The main runway featured the work of Felipe Oliveira Baptista, Miguel VieiraDielmar Luis Onofre, Storytailors, Luis Buchinho, Alexandre Marafeirro, Pedro Jorge, Modatex, Susana Bettencourt and Hugo Costa amongst many more.

The Dielmar Spring/Summer line was very classic and popular with the audience members. Strictly a male line, this collection was heavy on pinstripe, tight lines and neckerchiefs. A professional and smooth theme ran throughout, though some of the designs seemed heavy and the abundance of patterned squares were at time problematic in terms of aesthetics.

However, the swimwear and the grey suits were cancelled out any other concerns with the collection. They were reminiscent of 1950’s “Tom Ford” – style, bringing a great close to the show.

A delicate yet shimmering Felipe Oliveira Baptista show was shown. The bold tones of the daywear were clearly symbolising the natural colours found in Spring. The light – flowing materials were complimentary to the feel also and the zip detail on many of the garments was suggestive, yet playful. Definite standouts of this fine collection were the heels Baptista had his models adorn (punctuated with studs and tan coloured) and a sophisticated, coulette-style black piece that rounded off the show. It was the best show of that evening and arguably the whole event.

Other notable designs came from Luciana Texeira (Lennon-like shades), Claudia Garrido (a grey top with green-zebras stripes and the deathly eye-makeup) and Andrea Oliveira whose show featured an number of garments emphasising a space-age, androgynous feel.

There was great imagination at Portugal Fashion, which will surely continue for its Fall/Winter session next year.

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