We will not be silenced, we will not be invisible— we will be heard. This was the mantra for designer Masha Ma of MASHAMA for Fall/Winter 2017: a war cry for women that demand to be seen and demand to be heard, no matter what. Although a confident woman is a constant reference for any MASHAMA collection, this season was used to join the current uprising of formidable female voices heard from around the world.
Keeping with the brand’s ongoing narrative of subcultures, the streets of London and it’s punk heritage serve as a backdrop along with the spirit of it’s anarchy and youth-fueled rebellion. Empowering, sharp tailoring makes up the DNA for MASHAMA’s catwalk. Exaggerated shoulders are teamed with slender cut trousers, and the use of English and Italian suiting fabrics in pinstripe and tartan patterns are also a nod to the juxtaposition of defiance. Several takes on menswear suits were seen with tailored shoulders and asymmetric, pleated details gave us a silhouette that was fresh. Paired with corresponding pinstripes or tartan, power and the essence of strength took center stage. There was also the inclusion of mini and pencil skirts that fall above the ankle. However, these fine lines are disrupted by off kilter details: detachable pleating, d-ring straps, harness belts, snakeskin chokers and exposed midriffs showing off flesh ironically create a uniform for a non-conformist. Highlights from this include a brown-beige tartan combo suit jacket with elongated, flowing sleeves strapped in by a light beige leather harness. Paired with a matching slit skirt that falls above the knee and red over-the-knee patent leather boots, this look demands onlookers to pay attention. The MASHAMA girl means business, and she is loud and proud.
When we refer to the spirit of the MASHAMA female, she remains deeply intertwined with urbanity and Berlin’s underground scene. Glimmers of jewel-colored vinyl in silver, emerald and fuchsia cut into boxy skirts and oversized jackets layered over hoodies, slogan t-shirts and netting. A pair of denim-wide leg trousers features two central zippers on the front that leave the legs completely exposed and reveal fishnets worn underneath. A denim button-down with red tartan details along the collar, shoulders and pockets is worn open to the chest, revealing netting by the naval as well. It was punk, and it was damn cool. However, it was an all-pink look (an ‘it’ color for Fall) that was the star of the show and impossible to ignore: a fuchsia, shimmery three-quarter dress featured hand-cut leather strips on pleated velvet was teamed up with a black hoodie and worn under an oversized PVC fuchsia aviator, paired with red patent leather boots.
Several all-black looks were also noted, and of course fully further the theme of defiance. Jackets, trenches, asymmetric slit skirts, trousers and an interesting take on a babydoll slip were all made from PVC and were as black as midnight. Paired with silks and leathers along metallic boots, our fearless female can put any naysayer into submission. Closing out with these head-to-toe looks makes quite the impression, as black is a non-color or anti-color that swallows all other shades, and is a total void of allegiance. She will not be in quarantine. She will not be repressed. She will be heard: welcome to MASHAMA. JENNIFER STEVENS