I O N I A
Ionian Sea acted as the stage for the epilogue of Homer’s Odyssey. Having wondered across the Mediterranean for 10 years after winning the Trojan war, the hero of the story finally reaches Ithaca where his wife Penelope patiently awaits “with enduring heart”. The island of Ithaca is Odysseus’ kingdom, but home for him is a place of consistency and peace. Whilst the Zeus+Δione resort 2018 collection focused on Odysseus’ journey, this spring/summer 2018 collection is all about his delayed homecoming, concept which Homer emphasises throughout this epic poem. Two key elements derive from this starting point: The Ionian Sea that acted as the last leg of Odysseus journey and ultimately pushed him back to Ithaca and Penelope, the patent wife the King, who waited for his return as an emblem of home.
Penelope is an epitome of grace much like the essence of this collection. The silhouette builds on the loose, modern cut imbued with Greek heritage, synonymous with the brand. Wide sleeves, loosely cut trousers and shorts as well as caftans and dresses have a sense of ease, ideal for summer. To add a little Odyssean drama, sleeves and necklines feature a variety of traditional embellishment techniques like cutout embroidery with colored yarns and remakes of folklore embroideries inspired by costumes from Ioannina and Crete. Hand woven loom trims have been used to decorate trousers and shorts as side stripes, as bands in sleeves and across the shoulders as a strap. Penelope’s regality is captured in the ivory Delos kaftan, inspired by a traditional pokámiso, or ankle length chemise, that features geometric folklore cut made of trapezoid panels, embellished with gold embroidery around the neckline and parallel side seams. The same aura is echoed in the stripy gold and aqua fabric inserts applied to shirt cuffs and necklines.
Water is the central element in Odyssey, it’s the very substance that helped to bring the hero back home to Ithaca. Like the distinctive colour of the Ionian Sea, fresh aqua is a predominant tone and a new addition to the brand’s colour world. On the colour palette, it sits alongside navy as well as Zeus+Δione signature black, ivory and gold. Like gems of the ocean, fresh coral pink and rich maroon add a feminine touch to the collection tones. Light gold brings the essence of the decorative being noble yet subtle, just like Penelope. Silk plays a key part in this collection. Created exclusively for the brand in the silk town of Soufli, Spathoto silk comes in combination of light gold woven with ivory as well as aqua interlaced with navy. Amalia silk, also specifically woven for the brand, makes a return in fresh coral pink. Raw silk in ivory and light gold as well as tactile ivory plissé both add a strong sense of texture to the collection. Natural in feel and look, hand-made crochet ponchos and dresses that come in combinations of sand and burgundy remind of the craftsmanship central to the brand DNA.
Echoing the main collection, the swimwear line inspiration emerges from the deep aqua sea of Ionia. The silhouette is based on working with innovative cut outs and curved style lines reminiscent of morphology of the sea formations and the waves that stroke the coastline of Ithaca. Brands signature colour blocking is done in combinations of bronze and gold; ivory and black; shades of the sea along with burgundy. Hand-made ropes and contrasting binding details decorate each style. Produced in workshops in Athens, the signature sandal styles Sparta and Hephaestus have been decorated with gold, black, ivory, aqua and coral hand-made embroideries and cords. The jewellery collection consists of two distinctive stories. The first echoes Odysseus’ time at the sea, featuring nautical knots, anchor chains and robes in gold, silver and dark silver. The second one is more reminiscent of regal Penelope with gold and silver motifs inspired from traditional embroidery shapes used in the collection and piercing blue geometric lapis stones set in brushed gold.
QUOTES FOR LOOK BOOK:
“Tell me, Muse, of the man of many ways, who was driven
far journeys, after he had sacked Troy’s sacred citadel.
Many were they whose cities he saw, whose minds he learned of,
many the pains he suffered in his spirit on the wide sea,
struggling for his own life and the homecoming of his companions.
Even so he could not save his companions, hard though
he strove to; they were destroyed by their own wild recklessness,
fools, who devoured the oxen of Helios, the Sun God,
and he took away the day of their homecoming. . . .”
“My home is on the peaked sea-mark of Ithaca
under Mount Neion's wind-blown robe of leaves,
in sight of other islands- Dulichium,
Same, wooded Zacynthus- Ithaca
being most lofty in that coastal sea,
and northwest, while the rest lie east and south.
A rocky isle, but good for a boy's training;
I shall not see on earth a place more dear,”
“I am Odysseus, Laertes’ son, world-famed
For stratagems: my name has reached the heavens. Bright Ithaca is my home: it has a mountain, Leaf-quivering Neriton, far visible.
Around are many islands, close to each other, Doulichion and Same and wooded Zacynthos. Ithaca itself lies low, furthest to sea
Towards dusk; the rest, apart, face dawn and sun.“