Amid the Spring runways’ Surrealist proclivities, you’d be hard-pressed to ignore the profusion of visage-inspired prints. Faces have a long and storied legacy in fashion, from Elsa Schiaparelli’s delicate silhouettes courtesy of Jean Cocteau to the gorgeously graphic women who graced Miuccia Prada’s Spring ’14 ensembles. Enigmatic and evocative, the motif came to vivid life this season on catwalks fromAnthony Vaccarello and Marc Jacobs to Rachel Comey. Comey, whose impressionistic patterns appeared on a sundress and suiting, was acutely aware of the face’s tendency to stoke the imagination, to conjure up “a conversation, dialogue, diversity, a glare, or a captured glance,” as she tells Vogue.com. And it’s not the first time it’s turned up in her visual vernacular, either: Comey has previously dreamed up silhouette clutches in homage to the distinctive countenances of Serge Gainsbourg and Joan Rivers, and once even lensed her lookbook models wearing uncanny plastic masks. Of the latest take, the designer says, “We wanted this print to have a distribution of interesting colors, with the faces aspect being a subtle element. There is definitely an endless supply of inspiration in a portrait or an observation of the human body. And I always love the playful, surreal layering aspect of putting a body on a body or a hand on a hand.”
From the runways to IRL, we’ve rounded up Spring’s best ways to get some face time.