2009 February 19
(NEW YORK) 3.1 Phillip Lim
Phillip Lim cited rock n' roll influences for his fall collection, which was set to music by a live band (a recurring occurrence among designers this season.) The collection referenced everything from Jimi Hendrix to David Bowie, and balanced Lim's signature ruffles with rocker trousers. The shoes--a collaboration with Christian Louboutin--were divine, despite the fact that two models couldn't stay in them. Styles included studs: for men in an elegant gold-studded lounge slipper, and a similarly adorned ballet flat for women. Cartier's newly launched Trinity jewelry collection accessorized.
Anna Sui has a customer, knows the customer and feeds the customer, embodying Seventh Avenue at its best. (Cue the Thursday Styles piece.) At Wednesday's show at the Tents, her signature plaids, paisleys and patterns were business as usual. In a nod to the season, the palette was dark, with rust, saffron, and chocolate governing the mood. Since Sui is all about twists, it was difficult to isolate the newest one among the cowgirl boots, military jackets and black lace frocks. That said, Sui's mishmash of ideas is inherently un-formulaic, and the parade of top models (Sasha, Agyness, Natasha, Lily, Lara, Toni, Jourdan) attested to her enduring status as a power brand--not to mention one of the fashion industry's unsung heroes.
All is well in Richard's world, l'economie be damned! Lush prints were strong and feminine, on two occasions extending into boots--a clever touch. Well-tailored suiting and leather pieces lent the collection a well-rounded appeal for both day and night.
Milly by Michelle Smith
There's a reason that Ken Downing and Linda Fargo love Milly--the brand delivers season after season, offering its devoted customer more of what she deserves. This season, easy little swing coats and metallic minis emerged as focal points, with a rich caramel hue dominating the palette. "I was inspired by Manhattan's gallery girls," explained designer Michelle Smith. The look? Rich as hell. The price point? Very welcome. This contemporary designer does updated classics better than her contemporaries. With clothes this solid, accessories must be next.
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