There must be something sweet in the New York air this season. Designers are turning out collections with a sort of idyllic springtime glory in mind that has us already anticipating the onset of warm weather- or should I say frolicking in the fields weather. Don’t shy away from dressing your inner girly girl head to toe in everything-but-the-kitchen-sink kind of dresses. If your scared of looking too froufrou from all the frill, here’s a styling hack worth noting: throw on a pair of trainers under literally (and I mean literally) anything and your look is more modern and fresher instantly.
For Spring/Summer 2017, Monique Lhuillier returned to the design aesthetic in which her brand is rooted: feminine and frothy clothes that force you to fantasize as they walk past. In this case the fantasy felt like a sugar rush. Pale pinks, blues, and purples dominated the show and Lhuillier’s embellishments, a playful mix of florals, feathers and sequins, could be seen splashed about tulle and chiffon confections. Most of the pieces felt rather saccharine, reminders of when dressing up like a Disney princess was a worthwhile hobby. However, for those with a bit more of a grown-up sensibility Lhuillier still provided options for all the events on your social calendar. For example, the jumpsuit that opened the show had a slyly sexy attitude that carried over into a floral lamè look with a thigh-high slit and a Marylin Monroe inspired halter-neck gown.
Noon by Noor:
Shaikha Noor Al Khalifa and Shaikha Haya Al Khalifa, the cousin duo behind Noon by Noor presented a serene feeling kind of sweetness for SS17. Everything about the collection, from the soft color palette to the relaxed silhouette, has an ease that was instantly desirable. Elevated night-gowns and sheer separates demonstrated the continued strength of boudoir dressing. A few sportswear inspired pieces like an enveloping varsity jacket and a cloth-like boiler suit, however, added edge. Noon by Noor’s ensembles might appear simple at first glance, but after further inspection, complex monochromatic embroideries reveal themselves along with structural details you might not have expected. These are clothes that pull you in and keep your attention.
Sally LaPointe, being every the cool-girl’s purveyor of choice, added a bit of glam rock-n-roll to the feminine attitude we have been seeing at NYFW as of late; think heavily embellished skirts to the knee, bandeaus topped with feathers that swished as the models strutted by, and skinny trousers that lace up at the front. The oversized leather jackets with cut-out shoulders punctuated even the frilliest of ensembles with a much needed masculinity and are sure to be big hits with LaPointe’s fan base. The designer’s silhouette defining corsets are also standouts- some of the best examples of this widely obsessed about item on any runway. The look of the collection overall was less wallflower, and more assured and womanly- very welcomed in a sea of prissy.
Workwear is rarely a focus in a New York Fashion Week collection, but for Marissa Webb, office appropriate attire is perfectly in-tune with her easily wearable mantra for the modern woman. What’s better? She managed to pull it off with a surprising amount of visual interest and beauty. A slouchily tailored pantsuit held a simple elegance while a variety of interchangeable ruffled blouses and paper-bag waist bottoms were a fun twist on the classics. Now it wasn’t all copy room couture; there was a big emphasis, as per usual with Webb, on off-duty daywear. Chic high-neck tops when paired with low slung joggers done in leather displayed a striking tension between hard and soft. Like with any show by Webb, this one will no doubt sell well as each and every piece is distinct, but can be styled many different ways.
The fashion and art worlds have served as inspiration to each other for centuries, but that doesn’t make Tadashi Shoji’s latest collection inspired by the work of Wu Junyong any less exciting. The two visionaries are practically a match made in heaven as both their aesthetics are beautiful in a traditional sense. The Flying Ark, a Junyong painting in which a graceful bird, a crane lifts an entire tree full of exotic animals, saving them from a crumbling Earth was especially influential on Shoji this season. A short video version played before the show opened, and the bird’s lightness reared itself in many billowing dresses as well as feathered party frocks- both Tadashi Shoji signatures, ones he does superbly well. There were a lot of motifs strung throughout referencing Junyong and the designer’s own Indian heritage; hands and eyes peaked out among blooming bouquets and animal embroideries, which lent a personal touch to the show. Aside from Junyong, Shoji looked towards lingerie. His relaxed slips and peek-a-boo lace dresses would look right at home on the beaches of some island playground for the rich.