Designers defy matchy-matchy wisdom for the mix
By Samantha Critchell, APNEW YORK -- Most people are taught from a young age that they want their outfits to match.
September 10, 2013, 12:04 am TWN
Isn't that why there are suits? And belts should complement shoes. And try to match your shades of black, right?
The biggest group of offenders to the conventional wisdom, however, is probably fashion designers. In the styles they've been previewing at New York Fashion Week, which hits its midpoint Sunday, it's been juxtaposition” this and “opposite” that.
“It's all in the mix: feminine with masculine, sexy and slouchy, tailored with sport, chic with street,” according to notes for the DKNY show.
It was OK at Tracy Reese that a raffia lace dance skirt covered with circle patterns was worn with a floral cropped skirt and a checkered backpack was strapped to a floral top.
Designers can do it well, sometimes, with years of experience mixing colors and patterns — and having confidence. And times have changed, too.
“There's more freedom now to express yourself through your clothes than there was 20 years ago, 50 years ago. You can wear that full feminine skirt with the man's shirt. Go ahead, take your cues from the runway,” Reese said.
Cole's sporty Anorak and track jackets, hoodies and drawstring pants weren't clothes to just throw on in the morning completely without care. The mix of snakeskin, calf-hair camo and leather elevated normally casual silhouettes.
“The world is consumed with myriad points of view,” said Cole in his notes. “And through ever-emerging technologies, our points of view can now be made available to everyone, everywhere.”
That's why he sent his models down the runway with their own devices to snap the crowd.
The new collection, he said, “embraces this idea, not only through the device of a live stream Vine mosaic that will broadcast the fashion show to the world, but also by celebrating the creative energy the digital age embodies.”
Does Monique Lhuillier have perfect timing or what? New York Fashion Week hits right before the Emmy Awards — and then again in February right before the Oscars. Hollywood surely is her bread and butter.
The looks on her runway Saturday at Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week were lovely, and she clearly catered to her celebrity crowd with the many gowns and cocktail looks. But her own wardrobe was a factor, she said in a backstage interview: “I always look at women that I know and myself, and I'm like, `What do I want to wear next?' I always tell myself I want to have to want to wear these clothes because if I don't, then women won't.”
She offered for the next fashion cycle — which would include the Hollywood awards season — several looks that played with lace, sheerness, shape and a palette rooted in pinks and reds. “It's corals, reds, fuchsias, nudes and chocolate brown. Those five colors. Just over and over and it felt right.”