So. Let's begin with saying, There wasn't anything Particularly bad with this collection. It's just that it felt Lacking in Excitement and Vision. It played Way too safe and felt Like it belonged in the Contemporary section of the Department store and didn't even raise enough of a pulse to compete with much of the other labels already there. It had some High Points. But in the end it wasn't enough to elevate it beyond the Basic.
Theallet had some exciting colours that played A pretty hand for Spring 2014, Paprika, Tangerine, Sky Blue, Peach, Pistachio, and more... The colours pulled the collection from the Doldrums. However, they couldn't save it from being anything more than... Underwhelming. All very pretty Pieces and Easy to wear, Especially the Baby Blue Floral Evening Gown at Exit No. 33, but nothing really we haven't seen before and seen with more Flair.
Why Elie Tahari has for these last few seasons gone for these Static Presentations beats the hell outta me..?? His last Major Runway outing was Spring 2012... 2012!!!???!?!?? EGADS MAN! Get in the Game. The collection he showed for Spring 2014 was absolutely Runway worthy and had Great Appeal for Le Defile. Tahari's Collection Touched on all the Seasons (So Far) Hallmarks and added a uniquely personal twist to them. From Laser Cut Leathers and Sportif Separates to The All White looks that have predominated. The colour Block First look had Scuba Chic down pat and being cut out of Supple Leather made it Instantly of the minute... It's twin that had a Leonard of Paris Floral Print front panel was equally Tasteful and Fresh!
There in fact, were quite Innovative and Intricate work to be found in many of the garments but done with such a talented and light hand that most, if not all, came off as effortless and not one ounce forced. Take the Clean and Modern shift dress in White that from afar looked like a Textured Fabric or Broderie Anglaise up close turned out to be Appliqued pieces of cut leather that had been lasered with tiny cutouts and overlayed onto a sheer back... It was Technically Brilliant and Sublimely Easy! The next look a Black Laser cut Leather Mesh Jacket-Coat worn with a White Shift also had Great Impact. There was More of that Laser cutout Leather in a Brown Top coat that looked positively Baroque without being in any way excessive or costumey and a White Zip front Biker Jacket that had something of an Armor feel to it but had none of the Labor or Heaviness associated with Armor.
In essence, The collection in it's slight 23 looks was more Focused and Polished than much of what has been seen so far this season. Tahari does himself a HUGE Disservice By shying away from the Runway and showing in this Less than Exciting way. The man has the money and the prestige to be amongst the throng of designers showing at Lincoln Center. And when he is producing Incredible outfits (Women AND Men) like this... It defies imagination why he doesn't Stake his claim Back on the Runway.