The close relationship between Frida Kahlo and Georgia O’Keefe not only represents the coming together of two ground-breaking female artists but also, on a human level, the friendship and mutual support of two strong women who saw common ground in two very different worlds. This creative and rich duality is the springboard for Dea Kudibal’s Spring/Summer 2024 collection.
The colour palette brings together numerous shades of blue - inspired by Kahlo’s famous Casa Azul home in Mexico City - and mixes them with the rose pinks, oranges and berry reds of the desert that surrounded O’Keefe’s Sante Fe ranch. They are in turn set against a base of neutrals, black and pure white. Fabrics include a soft, relaxed linen, crisp cotton, signature silk and, for the first time, a raw denim. The latter is used both in work-wear such as a jumpsuit and trousers but also in more surprising pieces like a puff-sleeve blouse with brass buttons - the perfect mix of utility and femininity. Duality is also explored by combining fabrics - a jersey t-shirt has poplin cotton ruffled sleeves and a linen blouse has lace crochet inserts and buttons.
Print, as always, is central to the Dea Kudibal world. Flowers are everywhere - from oversized painterly desert blooms and graphic lilies to stylised paisley borders and folkloric prints. Elsewhere the magic of a night in a New Mexican hacienda is captured in a sketched landscape and traditional native motifs are abstracted into striking graphic designs.
Silhouettes are sitting closer to the body this season. Dresses have deep waistbands and attached belts to draw the shape into the waist whilst other looser shapes have rope belts with wooden beads to serve the same purpose. Many have much shorter hems that stop above the knee for a fresh and youthful attitude. Tailoring follows the same body skimming lines with a more nipped in waist on a blazer with piping as an added detail. Trousers have cargo details and a longer length skirt has buttons running down the front. A striking trench coat in black has exaggerated sleeves whilst a more classic version looks chic in pale rose pink. Knitwear is gossamer thin in shocking pink tops with dramatic sleeves and ruffle details or heavier weight as a cardigan embroidered in a swirly DK logo. And for the ultimate tribute to two extraordinary women, there is the Dea Kudibal version of O’Keefe’s iconic white shirt - this one with buttons along the entire sleeve - and Kahlo’s workwear jacket, rendered exquisite with folkloric embroidery.