2011 February 11

New York Fall 2011: Peter Som, Ruffian, Jason Wu

Peter Som Fall 2011 Peter Som Fall 2011
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(NEW YORK) Peter Som
No matter how quote-unquote quirky a collection might feel, Peter Som is ultimately known for polish. For Fall, he went a touche rumpled, but messy hair and frosted lips aside, these ladies are serious about dressing. To use some Vogueisms, the floral sheaths that made him famous were both charming and delightful. Take a nipped-waist red skirt suit and a similar, panted marigold style. Cashmere? Probably not, but the effect was the same. Ditto on a silver applique sleeved dress with maribou feathers padding the hips.  But it was a slouchy black lame trouser, insouciantly paired with a marigold knit and menswear single-button blazer on Ruby Aldridge, that felt the most signature Som, while a floor-grazing, long-sleeved jersey dress on Alana Zimmer will work wonders at retail. 

We want to wear it now! Takeaway from a Ruffian show is usually like this: Why can't I buy this at Barneys, at Bergdorf, at Jeffrey? The masculin/feminin thing that Brian Wolk and Claude Morais do so beautifully feels especially right this season. Who doesn't love a ruffled burgundy poet's blouse? At least five fabulous lace dress options? A dozen splendied ways to rock a tuxedo? It could almost inspire a fashionette to ditch the denim, light a (proverbial) clope, and spend the afternoon on a chaise, listening to Gainsbourg. Moody as can be and full of POV (that's point of view, loves), la vie en Ruffian has never looked better.

Jason Wu
The first two looks of Wu's show are beautiful enough to be framed. And imagine how fiercely they'll perform on the sales floor! This young designer is a master of sportswear in the very best American style, thanks to a delicious combination of edge, tailoring, and chic to the extreme. He loses us a bit on the Velasquez/Infanta territory, which, let's face it, belongs to Oscar de la Renta, and always will. Ditto for the ostrichy evening wear and the recurrent floral appliques.