Sunday, July 12, 2020

Tracy Reese Spring/Summer 2016.

Sun. 09/19/2015.






Tracy Reese took a newly bold and adventurous approach to her dazzling and eclectic Spring '16 collection that was a total home run in the sense of boldness and excitement and a much needed and progressive move forward into more experimental and forward thinking fashion. Where as in the past, there has been a pronounced romantic and vintage-y vibe being mined chez Maison Reese, here that vibe was evident still, signature style and all, but it was focused through a now more current and even avant lens that added a serious amount of vigour and renewed energy to her flirtatious and retro looks. 

Boldness was a key word for the day as was fearless, Reese delivered more punch in both the hues on display and the styling of the looks, there was this season, a something of a Mad Max meets Bohemienne flavour, romantic yet tough as nails. It was a striking and odd synthesis that never once faltered or failed,. each exit seemed to be telling a page from a greater, yet purposely enigmatic tale. A truly loud look of a flou rich Aqua maxi dress surmounted by a filmy gauzy layer of whisper light Lace in the same shade was casual and romance laden without being treacly or wan. A trio of Greens, comprising a sturdy trench coat that was rendered in a delicate Lace and paired with bermudas and a low bateau neck top underneath had a serious urban streetwear vibe but felt relaxed and upbeat, not like a forbidding armor to shield oneself. 

As for Reese's always assured and unwavering hand in evening, partake of a throwback glamourous look in fishtail skirted White Lace that would look equally as stunning on someone like Charlize Theron or Jean Harlow. Or, the peak of offhanded luxe, a drapey Gunmetal sequined top worn over a brocaded fishtail skirt that reeked of modern Hollywood, but again, was working a serious tough, yet chic groove. In the end, Reese gave us a command performance of impeccable and faultless modernity swathed in her signature romance that never once felt like she was compromising who she really is or paying empty hearted obeisance to current trends and fads. In that sense, her collection while wholly and resolutely of the minute, was also unerringly timeless, a tricky balancing act to be sure, yet one Reese accomplished swimmingly and with apparent gusto! 





That's All.





Bye4Now!

Monday, June 29, 2020

Rachel Zoe Spring/Summer 2016.

Sun. 09/13/2015.





Rachel Zoe is gonna be Rachel Zoe, no matter what! She knows what she likes and she knows how to design the best and most persuasive versions of those things. Her vision is unwavering, though not rigid, and that is why her collections usually are always if not groundbreaking, great showcases of the evolution of singular ideas that define the Rachel Zoe aesthetic. Spring/Summer 2016 was no exception and cemented as it does in perpetuity, how Zoe sees herself and her woman. She's a mix of Ali McGraw and Bianca Jagger with a definite cupful of California Surfer girl thrown in. Yet, this girl is the apotheosis of this idea, not an amalgam, in the end, Rachel Zoe's woman, is Zoe herself, quintessential L.A. but with a NY state of mind. 

Her Spring '16 collection was chock full of luscious and sexy offerings for the Modern It Girl, from flowing layers and bohemienne dresses to outright sexy yet, restrained and elegant glam. Zoe isn't pushing any envelopes, and really in the end, it would be definitely to her own enrichment as a designer to step away from her tried and true formulas and extend herself in more risky ways. As it lays, her output is predictable, yet it is so honed and laser focused that it's hard to find flaw with it. Hopefully, in the future, Zoe will step out of her comfort zone and do something totally outside herself, it may just pay off richer dividends in the end. 





That's All.





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Elie Tahari Spring/Summer 2016.

Sun. 09/13/2015.






Elie Tahari floaty and bohemian Spring 2016 collection looked like it was surely on it's way to Burning Man or Coachella but was destined to be adorned by the mother or Uptown Hippie aunt of the younger person they were tagging along with. It was a sophisticated, and pretty collection rendered in almost exclusively shades of White, Black and Taupe. It wasn't groundbreaking by any sense, but it was a romantic and enchanting vision of the Uptown urban nomad, not one so much of the Chelsea or Soho set, but more like the less rich inhabitants of the Upper West Side. A beautiful and wafting opening number in White was perhaps the best outfit in the show, everything else had a distinct flavour of "Been There" Tahari isn't known for breaking boundaries and pushing himself to the extreme of his capabilities, he doesn't have to, he has a huge Well-Heeled clientele all over the world and doesn't need to rock the boat, this collection for him was a step outside his comfort zone and felt like a move in the right direction, but ultimately, it looked too much still like the wardrobe that was in the pages of fashion magazines in the 90's and not of this moment, and not of the moment in 2015 when it was shown for 2016. Timeless can be good, but stuck in time is a totally different animal. 





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Derek Lam Spring/Summer 2016.

Sun. 09/13/2015.






A wholly eclectic sensibility suffused Derek Lam's uncharacteristically quirky and offbeat collection that was inspired by a documentary about the tragic chanteuse and pianist, Nina Simone. This impetus infused the collection with a more free handed and outwardly exuberant spirit than may be more used to by Lam, owing to the fact that Ms. Simone was something of a extrovert persona. In many ways, this enhanced Lam's usual urban and polished sportif edge with a interesting aura of the Bohemian, but in a few ways, it muddled his usually concise vision. In the best of the collection, Lam provided the ingredients he always has an abundantly deft hand at manipulating into the most deliciously tasty concoctions, Smooth fluid belted trench coats, sleek tailoring and romantic evening wear with an ever so slight sheen of the hippie, but a lot of that got, unfortunately, lost in the shuffle of Lam's more esoteric ideas, and that wasn't a good thing. 

In truth, it was exciting to see Lam partake of this particular vein of thought, but where it was exhilarating when it worked, mostly it felt underwhelming and, perhaps more to the point, boring. The main problem lay that it wasn't showing a new or refreshed take on this idea, it was manipulated into some "Interesting" permutations, but ultimately it felt lackluster. Lam, usually, unexpectedly upends the tropes he is designing and offers a modernistic yet definitively approachable and seductive vision of the modern urban and urbane woman, sadly this time, she looked common and aside from the richer touches in the collection, she also looked plain. And that, is perhaps the ultimate sin. 





That's All. 





Bye4Now!

Tuesday, June 2, 2020

Public School Spring/Summer 2016.

Sun. 09/13/2015.





Public School Spring/Summer 2016.

Maxwell Osborne and Dao-Yi Chow outdid themselves in the most sensational and spectacular way for their Spring 2016 Public School presentation that it's hard to put into words just how awe-inspiring the achievement actually is. It was a timeless collection that any woman could wear decades into the future and look as chic and progressive thinking as they do in 2016. The collection played up the Urban Nomadic idea that the duo may not have actually started but truly did develop into the current idea of what that vernacular of fashion is, that most everyone else is trying to ape and portray. This time out, they upped the haute caliber to the tenth power and sent out a collection that was as equally elegant and urbane as it was hip and urban. The pair said that they were envisioning their woman on far flung travels trying to find herself in doing so, that translated into a fluidity and softness that never felt wan or weak or timid. This is a woman who is equally strong in flowing layers as she is in the urban armor of hoodies and sweats and coats.

Osborne and Chow from Exit 1 showed that there was a new fashion forward vibe being followed, one that was most definitely more uptown than streetwise in it's approach. Yes, there was a distinctive sportif attitude that always permeates the Public School aesthetic, but here it was upcycled into a more polished configuration. Louche, liquid and languid were the words of the day, but that didn't mean drippy or amorphous. witness a puritanical and ascetic stretch of pure White at Exit No. 32 that functioned as a evening number but with a harder edged sportswear piece paired with it from the collection could be a minimal masterpiece for the Artsy set or could just as easily find itself in Southampton for a weekend soujourn. Couple this with the fact that the collection barely registered a whisper above the stark colour palette of Navy, Black, Grey and White interspersed with a punchy jolt of Scarlet, and the pieces could easily find themselves incorporated into a modern wardrobe and give a fresh and hip twist to what is already hanging out in one's closet. 

The Public School dynamic duo showed the skills in this collection to give one the kind of frisson of seeing a bright and unique future for fashion and a strong and individualistic new voice among the throng of many that crowd the fashion landscape. Chow and Osborne have a distinctive and enthralling patois to their work that augers well for the faith shown them by the fashion Powers that be, what they decide to do with that voice and how that manage to manipulate it further into new and exciting permutations rests on their shoulders alone, one can only hesitate a guess with such an accomplished collection as this one here, that their future is set for greatness! 





That's All.




Bye4Now!

Sunday, December 22, 2019

Victoria Beckham Spring/Summer 2016.

Sun. 09/13/2015.




Victoria Beckham Spring/Summer 2016.

Fresh and carefree is how Victoria Beckham chose to summarize her Spring/Summer 2016 collection and embodied that ethos of the clothes she sent forth. Relaxed and breezy were also very apt, but in a very offhanded and luxurious way. Beckham kept her palette simple, adding excitation by using a neutral-esque plaid and a punchy surfer print that channeled the advertisements for the movie "The Endless Summer" also by super saturated splashes of Rust, Curry and Marine Blue. Those colours were most effective when paired with the main colours of the collection, Black and White.

Beckham proved herself a mix-master with innovative and whimsical patchworking of prints and patterns and clashing yet, funkily harmonious juxtapositions, as in that aforementioned plaid in subdued tones of Grey, Black, and Red against Optic White, or Coral and Black/Marine and Curry Yellow/Black surfer prints popping against Black on a long, louche overcoat. There were more of these instances, but the hardest hitting pieces were the ones that relied less on counterpoint and focused on spare, clean modernism, like the simple brilliance of a sleek hooded leather split front top in Dove White paired with Black leather pants or the unequivocally masterful tank dress in White, again, with a band of Marine Blue at the neck and a single pocket in Rust, Genius!

Beckham has shifted her focus from her beginnings as a glam evening gown designer whose creations were molded within an eighth of an inch of their life to a lithe, sleek form, to becoming one of the best designers of luxe and unique sportswear on the fashion show rounds. It was an unlikely transition and one that has taken a little time to coalesce for the designer, but it is a niche that she has grown into and is beginning to hit her most powerful strides in. The future looks bright!





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Wednesday, November 13, 2019

Monique Lhuillier Spring/Summer 2016.

Sat. 09/12/2015.





Monique Lhuillier Spring/Summer 2016.

Colour! And loads of it. This was the impression left with one as they viewed the Monique Lhuillier Spring/Summer 2016 collection. Especially since Lhuillier proposed no overarching theme other than "Youth" and the collection certainly had a fresh and breezy quality which was underscored by all that intense colour. Teal, Tourmaline Green, Crayola Salmon, Lapis Blue, Coral Red, and the usual suspects of Black and White for a definite counterpoint. Structure, but in a easy way, was another aspect of the collection writ large, especially in dresses and elliptical hem tops that were swooped up and draped to one side in quite a dramatic fashion, most tantalizing in a strapless top and cigarette pant ensemble in Ocean and Lapis Blues. The best pieces however, came in a Modern Art style splatter print/embroidery that looked the most daring and exciting to the eye, most effective on a long strapless gown with an embroidered overlay at Exit No. 28. Lhuillier provided a vivid and lively collection that truly only stalled at the last passage of dresses which were clunky and underwhelming. otherwise, Job Well Done!





That's All.





Bye4Now!