It got off to a less than auspicious start, Custo Barcelona’s Spring/Summer Runway at Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week.  A line the length of the Tents’ lobby let you know that something had gone wrong.  Way too many invites, way too small a room.  Some people gave up and left, others tried to cut into the line, and the rest of us just stuck it out, hoping for the best.

The best, of course, didn’t happen, and with countless people left in line, the announcement was made that the room was full, and we’d all have to just go away.  Not that easily deterred, I parked myself in front of the big screen in the garden.  I’ve never missed a Custo show, and I wasn’t going to start now.

You enter a different world when you watch a Custo Barcelona show.  None of the regular rules apply.  You can’t judge it as fashion.  It is, simply, fun.  It’s a crazy mix of colors and textures that don’t make sense anywhere but here.

Of course there is a statement of inspiration (colors, graphics, transparency, oceans, cosmos, etc.).  It doesn’t matter to anyone but Custo Dalmau.  These are clothes that make you smile.  The first look out was a simple white short, white t-shirt with someone’s face emblazoned on it, and a green printed swathe of fabric that acted as a sort of cape around the waist.

Trust me, that was the most staid look that came down the catwalk.  What followed was an eclectic mix of patterns for men and women that no one else could possibly conjure up.  There were pinks and blues and greens all mixed up together.  Fringe turned up in the most unlikely places.  A summer shift shined in a mix of metallics and what seemed to be an almost Aztec-inspired print.  A colorful skirt and top you want to call “Mod”, has such a modern vibe that the word doesn’t really fit.

And so it goes, blast after blast of color and design that is quintessentially Custo.  No, it’s not for everyone’s taste, and not everyone can wear it.  Though I defy you, no matter what your age or position in life, not to find a piece or two that suits your lifestyle.

It says young, it says fun, it says happy, and when you consider that what we’re talking about here is fashion, not nuclear proliferation, there’s nothing wrong with happy.

Photography: Anton Brookes

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