Monday, September 26, 2011

SPRING 2012: More Notes From the Back Row

Get out your sunglasses girls cause you’re going to need them next spring if the recent collections are anything to go by. We’re talking neon colors that will probably glow in the dark. Great if you plan on being the best dressed jogger at midnight. At NANETTE LEPORE the citron cotton blazer and pleated skirt was just one of many neon brights she showed. I’d skip the tangerine numbers and go for a lovely deep sea blue pique sundress instead or even one of the gorgeous hibiscus print swimsuits.

Colors also popped at MILLY but not quite day glo. Instead there were some lovely (and flattering) separates and dresses. But what I especially loved were the colorful handbags and the cheeky printed patent boat shoes that Milly designed for Topsider.

J.CREW’S walk through presentation was a hot ticket and justifiably so. The way the separates were put together was genius. If I must single out some pieces I’d have to opt for the white sequined cardigan (very Chanel) piped in red/navy worn over a denim shirt and the lime sweater with a beaded skirt, plus any of the khaki shorts. So start working on those legs girls because shorts are definitely on trend for spring.

Speaking of shorts, CALLULA LILLIBELLE showed a cute slouchy pair in an ivory pin dot paired with an ivory dot lace tank and a pink jacquard oversized jacket. Shorts also appeared at TRACY REESE. Perfect for summer is her pearl lace edged cardigan and shorts and the khaki color cardigan over buttercup blouse and leather shorts. For a designer known for her feminine dresses these were a refreshing departure.

The shows weren’t all about neon colors. Also trending were the plethora of prints and color blocking. MIMI PLANGE showed exquisite Victorian floral prints in a strong, focused collection. My picks include the silk twill draped front trapunto stitched blouse in an oversized floral shown with satin gabardine cropped pants and the silk faille color blocked bustier paired with a high-waisted full silk twill skirt with oversized floral and tulle.

Mimi Plange's Beautifies Spring 2012
Is it clothing or art?  Doesn't matter, C&C loves it!

GABRIELA MOYA drew inspiration from the vibrantly colored paintings of Carlos Rodriguez Cardenas and used them for her deceptively simple separates. This is a designer to watch. She’s still young and has a way to go but remember her name. At ALI RO (seen at the Coterie, but I just had to include them) there were gorgeous Pucci inspired prints in silk jersey that brought back memories of the ‘60s and my originals which I stupidly gave away! SOB!

TOMMY HILFIGER was a winner in my book. Not only did he hit on all the key trends, there was something for all ages from tweens to my age (which is none of your business). Where do I start? How about his colorful glen plaid outerwear pieces, the butter soft leather wrap skirt in red and the popover shirtdress in yellow. There wasn’t a dud in the whole collection and judging by the audience’s reaction, the crowd of top tier editors and retailers agreed with me.

Strictly for grownups were a couple of sophisticated collections. SON JUNG WAN showed a lovely group in soft neutrals. Very ladies who lunch was her cream cotton dress with snakeskin waist detail and the tan sequined tank atop a full skirt in raw silk. My favorite number at NORMAN AMBROSE was his lovely peachy copper colored box pleat dress. It was youthful and could have stepped out of the society pages of a Slim Aarons book.

Also noteworthy, PORSCHE’s stunning white leather belted jacket and the perfect shirtwaist dress in dove grey unlined buttery soft suede. These items must be seen up close to really appreciate their impeccable detailing and design elements..

It would be remiss of me if I didn’t mention the one menswear show I attended, at the Empire Hotel’s rooftop lounge. NAUTICA’s sexy all-American models looked great in the “Sailing Club” and “Monterey” separates. Tops in my book, the white nylon waterproof parka over slim white jeans, the blue/white striped cargo shirt and whimsical white cotton signal flag shorts and a yellow coated cotton toggle jacket over stone cotton cargo pants.

C&C Can't Wait Until Memorial Day to Unwrap Nautica's Treat!

There you have it, my take on the actual shows at Lincoln Center (and since I didn’t get invited to all that many) I concentrated on the Lounges in and around the Lincoln Center. Between you and me, these breaks make fashion week less of a chore and more of a real pleasure. Not only did I get to relax, snack, drink wine, have a massage, pedicure, makeup and hair redo and facial (and boy did I look absolutely gorgeous, for me that is), I also got to check out some fabulous accessories, footwear, skin care products and much more. So, eat your heart out, these were the places I went and the goodies I checked out. I started out at the Empire Hotel (a great place with a friendly staff that I’d recommend to my out of town friends in a heartbeat. 

First up, the EDITE Showroom where I zeroed in on the gorgeous handbags by JACQUES FATH. Unusual colors, interesting hardware and perfectly structured bags set my heart racing. I also wouldn’t turn down any of STACY CHANG’s clean separates, especially her ivory linen blazer and paper bag waist shorts.

Jacques Fath Bags Rocked Crap and Couture!


Stacy Chang Makes Simple and Clean Oh So Fashionable

Normally I’m not a big fan of silver jewelry but when I saw the D.R. JULIENNE collection of one-of-a-kind pieces I was hooked. Bold, gorgeous and slightly art deco inspired (at least the bracelet I coveted was), this line is not for the shy violet but for the woman who wants to make a statement. To see more of Edite’s lines go to

Next on my agenda was a stop at the ALLURE lounge where ESSIE manicures were one of the lures as was the cup of Krup’s coffee. Thus fortified I moseyed over to the KIBOOTS collection of, naturally, boots. These however were a combination of ethnic kilim fabric and rugged leather. The look was a trendy hybrid of the cowboy boot with a lot more pizazz thrown in.

Well shod and fed I moseyed over to the GBK style lounge presented by pr cutie Anna Martin. The standouts here were the handsome unisex watches from CROTON (they look like major investment timepieces but are really affordable. Another interesting was HARPUTS unique one-size-all interchangeable black jacket in the finest Loro Piano wool. For my tired tootsies there was the line of packable ballet flats by SOLE DISCRETION. This lounge was where I had a rejuvenating skin tightening facial (took all of ten minutes) from SKIN MEDICA and got STRIVECTIN’s SD Eye Concentrate that I’m using faithfully day and night. 

Just Married... Just Shopping!

At the ARTISTRY lounge editors were treated to Artistry’s personalized skin consultations, not to mention wonderful massages and make-up touch-ups.

I went crazy as did all the other editors who crammed into LIA SOPHIA’s lounge to check out the debut of the “Boudika” red carpet collection. OMG, this direct sales fashion jewelry company showcased some of the boldest, eye catching pieces. Any time I wear one of their bracelets I get stopped by strangers wanting to know what I’m wearing. Check out the whole collection at the company’s web site, My fave piece from the new line is dramatic horn cuff hinged, matte gold cuff with black diamond crystals and lapis and carnelian resin but you can’t go wrong with anything from the Boudika collection.

Lia Sophia - Jewelry So Stunning it Makes Strangers Talk in New York!

While I’m on the subject of jewelry I must mention FENTON’s presentation at the swanky 4 Seasons Restaurant. The champagne was flowing and the semi precious necklaces and bracelets were to die for. I wouldn’t turn down the duster necklace in silver and silk rope with 24K gold plated crystals and pearls, or the pair of silver cuffs in pave jasper, turquoise, agate and coral beads. The holidays are coming, I’m just saying…

Sadly I dragged my body away from the Empire Hotel and to the DAILY BEAUTY BAR at the Townhouse Spa for some pampering. In my case that meant a CND shellac pedicure that left my toesies with a mirror finish and true to its promise, 14 days of perfect wear. And that’s the way to end another round of fashion week shows.

Until next time, C&C

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Crap and Couture, Notes From the Back Row