Channeling the seductive stylings of Audrey Hepburn or Grace Kelly but with thoughtful, contemporary whimsy is UK illustrator Karen Mabon’s spring/summer 2016 Rosebud collection. The 2011 Royal College of Art graduate continues to combine elegance with amusement through artistically derived silk scarves, and her latest drop is perhaps her most fashionably flippant yet.
Shot by Scottish photographer David N Anderson, the new collection is modeled by a 1950s housewife-type who suspects her husband is having an affair. The scarves play a pivotal roll in disguising the woman while she’s hot on the trail in this fantastical Hitchcockian montage. The campaign’s vibe underlines Mabon’s penchant for romance, but once unwrapped, the individual scarf designs reveal her cheeky outlook on everyday life. Like “Panda Baby Shower,” a motif inspired by the media’s relentless obsession with Mei Xiang, the Chinese panda who gave birth to the much-anticipated Bei Bei at Washington’s National Zoo last August.
Another surprising example is the “Fancy Dress Cat Costume Party” scarf, which features cats dressed up in everything from shark suits to pirate outfits to police uniforms. Then there’s her “Garden Party” design, complete with gnomes, bunnies and strawberries. As we discovered in 2013, scarves serve as the perfect palette for Mabon’s interests and talents; she can apply her imagination and serious knack for color to the silk accessory, and once adorned only the wearer knows how weird (or not) it may be.
Images courtesy of David N Anderson and Karen Mabon