Diane von Furstenberg"I always wanted to live a man's life in a woman's body." That mantra--her inspiration for her fall collection--said it all. The blazer is the DVF girl's new uniform; power trips came strutting down the runway in many forms, all comfortably encased in felted wool dresses and crepe blouses. Furthering the menswear-inspired trend, pinstripes prevailed on everything from jackets and skirts to slightly oversized blazers, which featured plenty of tweet and felted wool. Femme fatale came in the form of cable-knit sweaters woven with link chains, jersey tees paired with suede biker jeans and jacquard tiered skirts. Not one to give up her femininity, however, there was also exploration of nature. A beetlebug water satin dress was a chic option, as was the gray and pink bolero covered in chiffon rosettes. A new silhouette to a classic, DVF's LDB was reworked in black with cap sleeves in a chain mail inset. This was creative director Nathan Jenden's last collection as DVF's right-hand man; undoubtedly the two were happy to end on a highly-positive note.
Calvin Klein Collection Men's
Italo Zucchelli continues to elevate and build upon the momentum of why he is, without a doubt, at the top of the men's wear game. His fall collection--tough and tactile--further explored the designer's passion, not to mention self-challenge, of exploring new and innovate fabric manipulation. The results for fall quite literally knocked the socks off everything he's done in the past. Sleek and replete with technical fabrics, tailoring and construction were at the peak of their game in the form of suits and overcoats that were sturdy and comfortable to grasp. Zucchelli designs for a confident man; who else would be extroverted enough to wear a suit made of iridescent nylon or silk mesh? But it all works fabulously together without ever being overbearing or intimidating. The neck took center stage for fall, surrounded by an assortment of turtlenecks and collars that encased itself much like a protective wall. Much like how many of the women's collections shown this week have sought that fine line between masculine and feminine, Zucchelli's play on shiny versus matte was cleverly balanced in a worldly palette of earthy and metallic tones.
Philosophy di Alberta Ferretti
By eschewing her usual evening "runway" show format for a more intimate presentation at her Midtown headquarters, Alberta Ferretti set the tone for what was easily one of her most romantic Philosophy collections to date. All the more better for editors to witness--and appreciate--the craftsmanship of what was a pronounced Edwardian, not to mention romantic, collection (shown on Valentine's Day, no less). Minus the fuss and muss, the lineup edged closer to her main signature line with its ethereal gowns and dresses, several of which featured eyelet-encased high collars. Soft and romantic have always been Ferretti trademarks; beautifully tailored outerwear, not so much--so the slick lineup of leather jackets and trenches she paired with otherwise cozy separates and gowns was more grown-up and, at the same time, indicative that the Philosophy girl has graduated to the next stage in her effervescent life.
Hiccups are part of the growing pains of life, and despite some forgetful handlers who failed to remove the plastic off the runway, the show went on--and beautifully so at that. For Simon Spurr's first-ever runway show, the designer proved he has the goods to back the hype. The strong collection featured beautifully tailored suiting and separates--easily some of the best of the season--that included strong double-breasted jackets and looked structured and polished. Colors were, for the most part, steered toward masculine territory and featured the occasional injection of stripes and checks. A waffle print grey suit was both warm and inviting to the touch. Snug--tailored to you and me--was a key element with the collection, from the three-piece suits to the cropped motorcycle jackets. These clothes are clearly for the well-defined man.
If Donna Karan had one message to send with her DKNY collection for fall, it was this: get a coat--and make it a fabulous one at that. The bold fall collection she presented Sunday was filled with an endless array of beautiful outerwear; you name it--riding coats, vests, boyfriend jackets and peacoats--and she had it. And it all looked terrific. Inspired by her heart and soul New York, the palette ventured from rich vicuna and cognac into port and sapphire, with some plaid thrown in for good measure. The miniskirts were terribly sweet, particularly with their pleated precision. Karan explored collage prints for fall and the results were particularly finessed in a cravat dot print silk collage dress and deco beaded tissue flannel colorblocked dress. The geometric nature of it all was clearly a natural extension of Karan's inner-Manhattan, which made for a warm blend of her classic comfort silhouettes minus any of the cold, steely gaze.
Catherine Malandrino is toughening up for fall. Furry, feral and oh-so-savage, it seemed a far cry from her show inspiration, which was "a vision of earth as seen from above." It all looked, instead, very subterranean. Drama was the order of the day this time around: raw goat hair? Check. Animal prints? Check. Hoof-shaped footwear? Double check. Despite the more primitive, raw feel of it all, the cut remained signature Malandrino; that is, warm and body conscious with a few cocoon shapes thrown in for good measure. Don't worry, though--there's still plenty of luxe velvet pieces (some with croc-embossed sleeves) and delicate blouson dresses and gowns for the less adventurous set.