Whenever I look at runway shows or collections, I always think about the inspiration, thoughts, and effort that went into creating it. We generally tend to think that the more avant-garde and whimsical designs take more creativity to produce (i.e. Alexander McQueen, John Galliano, Thom Browne, Jean Paul Gaultier) than the more reserved, traditional designs (i.e. Dior, Ralph Lauren, Dolce & Gabbana). Just glancing at it, it does make sense that innovative and unusual designs would take more creativity, but I can also see how the classical designers may have a rougher time. When you're designing avant garde (I can only imagine) you have free rein to think up and make whatever you want. So it might take up more brain power to think up something that's never been done, but you can still do it and when you do people will be less likely to criticize you because of your, supposedly, brilliantly abstract mind. On the other hand, classical designers have to think up traditional looking clothes, without it looking like last year's collection. They have to make something that is familiar but still never-before-seen, which is a tricky thing to balance. It’s only natural to think that little or no work goes into creating classics, especially when they’re up against wild and irregular creations, but the truth is that the traditional designers have to keep remaking the classics to keep them relevant.
Left: Ralph Lauren
Right: Comme des Garçons
Both took inspiration from a single hue (for Rei, a sharp red; for Ralph, a cozy camel) but they differ in the ways in which they executed their ideas. You can see how, at first glance, one would think the Comme des Garçons dress would take significantly more creativity and work than the Ralph Lauren outfit.