Kudos to Ashley Rowe for realizing there’s only so much splatter painting one can do before it gets old. The Toronto designer has made a name for herself with her splattered tees, but realized at just the right point that good things come in small quantities. So she’s moved on.
Her spring collection features what might be the most natural progression: tie-dye. Inky blues, greens and pinks coated extra, extra large dresses and pants. The giant silhouettes were not unlike the Jil Sander Spring collection in their sheer volume, but the watery prints gave the illusion that Rowe was taking high fashion and throwing it into a vat of dye. It’s commendable: Ms. Rowe finds a concept, sticks to it, and makes it her own.
I observed this at her show last night in a lofty, exposed brick space on Dufferin Street in Toronto. The walls were part of the installation, with oozing colours projected onto the white brick. A bathtub lay in the middle of the floor, models walked around it, and I wondered if that was where Ashley did her dying.
Though I’m not quite sure how well the tie-dyed muumuus will do on the racks, half the fun of Ashley Rowe’s stuff is wondering what she’ll come up with next.