aholic by Brad Boultinghouse 2011
by Mikelle S
The model rounded the curve, the mosaic print rippling off of her, the high hem in front of her high enough to reveal the bottom of the bathing suit she wore beneath. It was the same look that was on the promotional image that got me interested in the show, and the same look I’d just seen backstage but as always, there’s something a bit different when you can see the fluidity of a garment as the model stomps down the runway, the dim, intimate lighting only enhancing the overall appeal.
Brad Boultinghouse showed his entire 2011 collection for his label aholic this past Thursday on the Columbia Metropolitan Convention Center patio. Attendees came out for a night of champagne, hors d’oeuvres, music, and fashion with proceeds benefiting One Good Deed charity, based in Kansas City, Missouri.
“The goal is to raise enough money for diapers for one hospital, for one month and update a laundry facility,” Boultinghouse exlained to me a few days before the show. He went on to detail how the $3,000 would buy diapers that would provide effective sanitation and prevent diseases for children, as well as bring the outdated laundry facilities into the 20th century in order to sustain these new diapers as there’s a landfill problem in Africa, where these funds would be headed.
The collection showed was one that was still very much within the parameters that Boultinghouse set for himself. One look in particular, a grey body conscious cocktail dress with architectural ruffle flourishes, was a dead ringer for a black dress he showed last season. The collection surely wasn’t the same though with a great deal of fragility and even innocence in pieces.
While Boultinghouse did say he’s nervous about how his pieces will be received, he himself knows that they aren’t for everyone. That black shift dress with the white block of fabric layered over it, and those herringbone shorts, along with the rest of the collection are one of a kind pieces going to customers who don’t have to worry about going out and finding another girl with the same look. These of course are customers who have no qualms in matching the softness of a simple white cotton dress with the rough appeal of the spiked wedges that comprise one third of Boultinghouse’s entry into accessories.
see more backstage photos by Keri Goff
The collection as a whole was a consistent one, a solid one and even above average for Columbia fashion. Though possibly a tad confusing as all seasons are shown in one presentation Brad Boultinghouse ensures cohesion by telling one story, one that he says is his own, and seems to include a bit of retro sensability. I only await future collections from him.