Mary Katrantzou Fall 2012 Collection

Posted on February 22, 2012

God, it must be so great to see things the way Mary Katrantzou does; with that seemingly innate ability she has to take the most banal imagery and turn it into the most eye-popping prints and shapes you’ll ever see. She explained that this time around, she wanted to use waves of colors taken from things you use in everyday life, the result of which are witty and whimsical prints of old-fashioned typewriters, telephone dials, hangers, pens and pencils. Purely 20th Century imagery turned into 22nd Century fashion. Fabulous and forward-thinking.


[Photo Credit: Getty]

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  • MK03

    LOVE the typewriter dress.

  • Love the bell-shaped sleeves!

  • Oh, I used to have a red Selectric! 

  • AuntieAnonny

    I don’t know what to say besides “incredible”.

  • Kayceed

    She is some sort of visionary, I think. I see her garments less as garments and more as art.

    •  Wearable art, yes. Fashion that could be worn, no.

      • sleah_in_norcal

        i’d wear it in a minute if i had somewhere to go.  no red carpets within a 180 mile radius.

  • IAmJ

    This one’s for you, Rooney.

  • Look!  Amy Winehouse eye makeup!  In all seriousness though, what a fantastically fun collection.

  • Wow!  Now that’s working with prints.  PR “all stars” take note and quit your cryin’. 

    • MoHub

      And how many things do you think she makes solo in a 24-hour timeframe with it severely limited budget?

  • God, I just love this chick!  

  • Can’t you just picture Lady Gaga in the typewriter dress with boots made of text and a giant typewriter key of the letter G on her head?  

    • rougeort

      Kris, you just made my day 🙂

    • I can! But I really wish more women would wear these sort of garment to the red carpet, they look so gorgeous and DIFFERENT. I seriously think that this was the most boring awards season fashion-wise so far. I miss Bjork.

      • kmc1138

        I was totally going to comment “can’t wait to see how long it takes to see Bjork in one of these.”  Yay for Bjork and crazy/out there/awesome fashion. 

        • Derek_anny

           I admit, I like the Swan.

    • sleah_in_norcal


  • Insane.  I love it! 

  • Those green dresses are mine, they just don’t know it yet. 

  • EverybodysStarling

    I`m in love with the dress on the right, 5th row. Pure love!

  • What’s amazing to me is that while everything looks wildand artsy on the surface, the shapes are surprisingly wearable. I’m an hourglass size 10 and I could still wear a few of these.

  • Lauren Maier

    Typewriter dress is mine.  Just so you know.  

    • mjude

      we might have to share cause i am all about that typewriter dress 🙂

      • Lauren Maier

        I’m okay with that!  Split the cost down the middle!

  • Did you see the Mary Katrantzou for TopShop collection?  Lovely and WEARABLE stuff. Sold out in two minutes flat and now all over Ebay of course…

  • Anna Wintour is going to make a slave of one of these dresses. 

  • WOW. I love to see fashion, but to see something this inspiring isn’t common (for me) on the runway. Just a fantastic lens that abstracts the world around us and makes it into something incredible.

  • Sara__B

    I’m glad there are people like Mary Katrantzou in the world, playing with shape and color and print, and creating wearable art that wakes us up and puts smiles on our faces. Such fun!

    • FayeKat

       Thanks for the link, it was wonderful to watch.
      I think miss Katrantzou is getting better and better with every season. I always loved the colors she uses, they are so vibrant… It’s a pitty we don’t see more of her desings on the red carpet. 

  • Dejah_Thoris

    These are crack-tastic. I’d never wear them, even assuming I had the money, but I love everything about them. 

  • I agree – WOW! Beautiful, innovative, thoughtful – what a great collection!

  • TonyGo

    I try to like her stuff, and can appreciate the whimsical prints and designs, but her stuff always looks so stiff.  Is it the printed fabric?  How do they “move” on the runway?   Individually, there are some cool pieces here.  As a collection, it just starts looking like more of the same visual clutter. 

  • Judih1

    love 85% of her collection

  • Fay Dearing

    Does anyone know what those photo printed fabrics actually feel like? I mean, they’re just gorgeous and they seem to be becoming increasingly popular for good reason, but what fabrics can be printed on and what does the photo image do to the texture of the fabric? It’s just that I am seriously tempted to use spoonflower or some other custom fabric printer company to make myself an out of this world bag or coat but I don’t know what the fabric is going to turn out like and I don’t want to spend the money if I can’t end up using said fabric for what I want. So. Does anyone know what these fabrics are like?

    • Heather Galaxy

      I only know they’re silk because I wished I could own one of her dresses and I don’t do animal fibers. I have no idea how they feel. 

    •  They look as if they’d crackle like an awning, or the all weather fabric used on patio cushions.

    • Spoonflower fabrics are great, just pick the kind you want. The printing doesn’t effect the hand of the fabric. The color matching is what is tough, but you can order a swatch to check everything, before you settle on what you want. And the “order a swatch” directive is really the best advice. They are cheap, and you can be sure everything is as you want before you spend a gazillion dollars on enough fabric for a coat.

  • sleah_in_norcal

    i’d love to see these in person or at least a high res. detail shot of each so i can appreciate the use of photo-prints even more.  they remind me of one of the mixed media techniques i use in my art work which involves my own photos, printed on high quality paper, then cut and stitched on a sewing machine with my own hand-painted fabric.  people keep telling me “you know, you can print them on fabric”  (yes, i know), and that would certainly be the thing to do if i were making garments, but for wall hung pieces i like the combination of textures.  the paper gives the piecing crispness and adds structure to the fabric.  anyway, i always appreciate mary k.’s work, and wish i could wear that green gown.  are those garden hedges in the print?    

    • Diana Delgado

      they have some good detailed shots on the american vogue website. i spent a good half hour this morning checking them out. they’re amazing.

    • Qitkat

      I’m intrigued by your own work; is there any place where we can see it online?

      • sleah_in_norcal

        i’m represented by  i know they have some of my art quilts posted, but i’m not sure if any use photos.  i’m doing a photo art competition in feb called alameda on camera and the piece has to done by april first.  is there a way i could email an image to you?

        • Qitkat

          I would LOVE that. Thank you. Use this one:

          The spelling is not traditional. The first three letters are my initials.

  • MilaXX

    I would love to see someone attempt to pull off one of these dresses on the RC. The colors and prints are amazing.

    • minnye

      I’m rooting for the middle gown, second row.

  • hughman

    It has a sort of Versace print/Alice In Wonderland vibe which is enchanting. If I were the hostess at a cocktail lounge in the film “Strange Days”, I’d be all over it. 

  • That is frikkin’ FANTASTIC!

  • ElitheMonkey

    The typewriter one made me swoon. 

  • howdoilook

    Love her use of patterns. Question: does a designer like Katrantzou design her own patterns? If so, is it done digitally? I’ve always wondered this.

    • ballerinawithagun

      Yes, it is done digitally.

  • Stubenville

    Lady Gaga and  Bjork have probably bought the entire collection. In the real world, almost no one can wear these clothes except as a joke, but I will admit that the typewriter dress made me grin. Ms. Katrantzou is a very, very inventive designer.

  • Holy shite!  Why isn’t she a household name already!  What an amazing collection.

  • Katy Beazley

    I’ve been absolutely obsessing over this collection since it came out.  Her work impresses me more and more every season. She somehow finds the perfect mix and balance of color, print, strength, and silhouette.  How fascinating it would be to get to see these in person and talk to her about her design process… a fellow designer can dream!  And I would absolutely wear these in real life if I had such a budget!  Why not, you live once… dress like there’s no tomorrow 🙂

  • homespunner

    Why so sad honey? Is it because the “shift keys” are right where your nipples should be?

  • BrooklynBomber


  • orangealexandria

    T-Lo, would you ever consider doing an explanatory post about how collections like this (i.e., more art than commercial) get made, funded, etc. I absolutely love this, and yet I don’t understand how making it is a business. Where does the money come from? Thanks!

  • These are some of the most driven, modern and exciting examples of surrealism I have seen in lo these many years. Brava!

  • turtleemily

    The third look makes me think there’s toilet seats on her thighs.

  • Ennovi_R

    The first look is my favorite. This is AMAZING!

  • Kate4queen

    I love her work. It is so different. 🙂

  • Eat your heart out Mondo.

  • Amy Ellinger

    2nd row, third dress= Elle Fanning fabulosity.

  • formerlyAnon

    NOTHING there I can imagine in real life as I experience it. And I love it.

  • Joyce VG

    This collection is marvelous.

  • Anathema_Device

    This is a collection I would love to see up close and personal. It is so great looking. I love the way she took relatively normal silhouettes but still made them out of this world and fascinating.

  • PhillyDeb

    OH how I wish I were young, thin and rich!! To be able to wear these dresses would be a dream!!

  • R. L.

    The black and white reminds me of the imagery used by a young ceramic artist, Jason Walker, in his work.  

  • At the risk of repeating myself, for all those people who say this is not commercial.  She produced a nine piece, silk printed capsule collection for British high street retailer Topshop which sold out within minutes. The prices on Ebay are now crazy.

    • formerlyAnon

      Thank-you for that link.

  • P M

    GASP for the third row left dress!!! This whole thing is so imaginative. LOVE.

  • Looks like a DREAM! I love the red typewriter dress, too.

  • Nice to see someone doing something different with fashion. I would definitely try to rock some of these if I wasn’t a simple grad student stuck in the suburbs of Philadelphia and had an occasion to wear these pieces. 

  • BrightsideSusan

    Really wonderful prints, great colors.  Look forward to seeing who dares to wear these!

  • CatherineRhodes

    Who is the market for these clothes?

  • Sisyphus .

    I loved these! These are so crazy and awesome and surreal! It just needs a fur-covered teacup somewhere. I love the typewriter dress and the last red dress with the cartridge pleats.

    The pantsuit in the middle of the second row looked amazing in the video someone linked to.

  • Marezeedotes

    Does that mean the skirts in the fourth row are pencil skirts?

    Heh. 🙂 

  • Marezeedotes

    Gives a whole new meaning to the term “pencil skirt.”

    As an elementary school teacher, I’d kind of love one – to liven up standardized-test season.  

  • Vickiefantastico

    Now THAT is art! I feel like I could just stare at each piece for hours. Not sure how it works as fashion, honestly, but I love it!

  • Toto Maya

    I want to wear one of these to the high school I teach at one day, just to see what would happen.

  • quiltrx

    VERY cool!  I wish I lived in a world where I could wear such things.

  • M N

    OMG that green maze dress is freaking amazing.  I love Mary Katrantzou.  Most of the time I would never wear her stuff, but it’s still some of the most interesting clothing of the year.  (I did buy one of her Longchamp bags, glee!) But that green dress is just.  Amazing.

  • kckris

    Of all the posts that you have ever done for runway shows, this is hands down, my favorite.  This line is stunning – I can’t wait to see some celebs in these.

  • Matthew Wallace

    this collection was GORGEOUS!!!! one of her best yet, she played around more with silhouette this time.
    Those ruffled dresses are immaculate, and the gardens prints are some of her most stunning.
    Perfect perfect perfect

  • umeboshi

    fuck the goddess gowns. let’s see THESE at the oscars.

  • I love the shapes of the designs and the colors – but I’ve never been a fan of print. I enjoy the elements of the prints, but they’re just too busy for me. 

  • pippitypup

    Wonderfully surreal.

    Now, is it just me, or does the model in the red typewriter dress look about 12?

  • LesYeuxHiboux

    LOVE the green to the left of the typewriter dress, the typewriter dress, the blues, and the pencil print. Awesomely fun collection.

  • love.

  • ccm800

    I mean I GUESS if you can make an entire career out of dressing Nicki Minaj 

    • boweryboy

      Although Minaj has worn some of her dresses it’s the other way ’round.

  • fashionablylate

    LOVE LOVE LOVE, as usual!

  • Truly_Outrageous

    This is freakin awesome. I love these fun looking prints and the overall design of the garments.

  • miwome

    I love her, and I love the way she not only combines prints with each other, but manages to make them work with some fairly complicated structure in the garments themselves.

    I’m also surprised at how much I like the shoes!

  • SVLynn

    What a creative mind! I will think of typewriter girl everytime a PR judge asks “who is this girl and where is she going?” Wild.

  • bluefish

    LOVE the entire first row and the sixth look — the crazy baby doll dress. Beautiful prints.

  • malvernite

    the blue knit turtleneck dress is amazing.

  • That typewriter dress looks like a work of art on all its own.  Love all the shapes here, they’re different but she uses them so well.

  • Puckndc

    I give up..between Jacobs and this et al…..are they kidding???????

  • PastryGoddess

    OMG..Love this collection.  I can never see myself wearing any of these looks, but I want to anyway.  Brava Mary K

  • Please, please, please Tilda rock one of these dresses on the red carpet!!!

  • It’s great to see Mary expanding her range outside of just cocktail and evening with some separates and knits thrown in. Her Topshop capsule collection is bound to get more people’s eyes on her work, but if she’s concerned with growth (as almost any young designer brand inevitably is), she’s going to have to find a way to translate her work into more approachable ready-to-wear pieces. I’m very resolutely against the idea of people watering down their vision for commercial purposes if it isn’t necessary, but even people known for their eye-searing colors and outrageous ideas like Henry Holland or Bernhard Wilhelm find ways to inject their aesthetic into a wide enough array of styles and product categories to let buyers curate the collections and introduce them to women in more understandable ways that stand up on their own merits outside the context of a runway show.

  • mila_8

    Love it! Makes me look forward to partying like it’s 2099.


    What a treat on the eyes. A truly forward thinking, statement making collection.

  • piecesofconfetti

    This is art. Beautiful.

  • piecesofconfetti

    This is art. Beautiful.

  • bitterk

    I love it

  • bitterk

    I love it

  • Sixth row, far right – paging Cate Blanchett


  • Adwoa Bagalini