The Grand Allure segment of Philippine Fashion Week Spring/Summer 2012 belonged to one designer, whose ten-piece collection edged out the other eleven for its simplicity, cohesiveness, and stark representation of the designer's aesthetic.
For Norman Noriega, the glamorous dressiness required of Grand Allure showings took on a captivating and refreshing turn with his take on evening dressing. Devoid of the pageant cheesiness that we're so used to seeing—and have come to expect—from evening wear designers that present season after season in Fashion Week, his ten-strong lineup of black and gold long dresses is a study in minimalist glamour. Silhouettes are sharp, reed-thin, and almost restrained, and what the dresses lack in volume and peculiar showiness they make up for in delicious, in-your-face shine.
But more important than anything else is how Norman stayed true to his casual, street-chic aesthetic with a formal lineup such as this. This is the first evening wear collection we've seen from him, and it's a commendable and promising one: It was a successful endeavor of taking a laidback sense of style into glamorous, high-wattage heights.