Friday, 10 June 2011

The obi belt

The spring/summer 2011 collections were defined by the Orient: accentuate your waist with the season's most exotic accessory, the obi belt. Designers from Caroline Herrera to Sonia Rykiel featured versions of the Eastern waist-cincher on the runway. 

Carolina Herrera
At Herrera, block colours nestled against wide neutral backgrounds, and were finished with geographic buckles, while at Sonia Rykiel, an obi-style belt was knotted over a chunky cardigan - a failsafe way to add shape to summer cover ups. 
Louis Vuitton

For versatile obis, look to Louis Vuitton (sequins) and Gucci (ropes, tassels), as well as the great British high street. River Island has channelled Marc Jacobs - the cranberry obi belt adorned with corsages is excellent - and the Paul & Joe spring/summer 2011 collection features metallic obis perfect for summer. 
Paul & Joe
Asos.com currently has a black leather obi with skinny leather bow detail which will fit seamlessly into your existing wardrobe. Alternatively, visit your local haberdashery and create your own satin version, as seen at Haider Ackermann. 
Gucci
The spring/summer 2011 collections delivered an Eastern promise - waists defined by obi belts. Carolina Herrera's polished cinchers had a graphic appeal, while Sonia Rykiel was more playful - tying hers over cardigans and paper-bag trousers. Paul & Joe's metallic obis are perfect for a dose of summer night glam, while there were sequinned options on the Louis Vuitton catwalk for extra sparkle. At Gucci, they had a tribal feeling and came tied over skirts, jackets, trousers and dresses. Wear yours with bright colours and break up a colour-blocked look. 
How to wear the obi? Over everything! The obi belt completes a look with elegance, pulling together separates and adding a brilliant twist to maxi dresses and tailored jumpsuits.

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