2010 September 14

Runway Reviews: Carlos Miele, Monique Lhuillier, Tracy Reese, Reem Acra

Carlos Miele Spring 2011 Carlos Miele Spring 2011
Getty Images
View Gallery

Carlos Miele referenced everything from butterflies to Pink Floyd to the concept of freedom for his Spring collection---which was as varied as it sounds. Some of the strongest pieces were the designer's gold embroidered pieces, print standouts, and his signature well-fitting charmeuse dresses. But Miele strayed for more rough-looking coral numbers and black see-through long columns. There were simply too many concepts, textures, and ideas within a single collection that ultimately overshadowed the designer's own strong work.

If Monique Lhuillier’s Spring 2011 collection was born from a dream, one would never want to wake up. Known for her signature embellished evening gowns that dominate the red carpet every awards season, next Spring exudes even more Old Hollywood glamour, channeling silver screen legends like Audrey Hepburn or Grace Kelly. Many of her pieces seemed to be interpretations of the original couture houses from the 1950s, like Balenciaga or Vionnet, from her hourglass and column silhouettes to her fuller bustled and tufted gowns. For her daywear, she used shimmery antique gold raffia to create fitted jackets with longer skirts, and her eveningwear palette ranged from jewel tones like red apple and toffee to soft mint chiffons as well as pink floral and reptile chiffons. Every piece was masterfully executed, whether it was embroidered with bugle beads or pleated and draped.

An island girl at heart, Tracy Reese’s easy and breezy Spring 2011 collection is perfectly suited for a Spring brunch in Soho or strolling the marina in St. Barths. Though she’s known for reinterpreting vintage, this collection was modern, fresh, and effortless, and she created a quintessential wardrobe that perfectly transitions from the weekday to the weekend. She showed cropped jackets and feminine trench coats mixed with shorts or tailored pants, topped with dolman sleeved knitwear for the urban chicette. For the weekend getaway, her cotton sundresses and maxi dresses were in colorful batik or island prints, and flirty cape sleeves balanced A-line silhouettes. Fun and flirty, Tracy Reese makes us wish that summer would never end.

Once Upon A Time, a dreamy Reem Acra traveled to a faraway land for her latest collection, teeming with ultra-romantic frocks fit for a princess. An ode to all the regal women Acra has dressed over the years, the designer created a collection that was an urban, American, updated take on the princess dress. Instead of full skirts and miles of tulle, Acra opted for a more simplistic approach—notably an utterly unfussy silk chiffon column dress. “There are a lot of fresh colors that I haven’t tackled before,” Acra explained. “I think it’s a fresh attitude. This American princess is cool and has breakfast in an evening gown,” she laughed. While minimal at points, gold sequins and delicate embroideries still offered much in the way of resplendent, crown-worthy embellishments.