Image by TheDigitel Wednesday night's runway looks
Wednesday’s shows kicked off with the requisite retail presentations, last night from Tommy Bahama and House of Sage.
Tommy Bahama sent models careening down the catwalk with mega-watt smiles and a casual walk, draped in linen, swim pieces and bits of floral, all accessorized with raffia and straw derived accessories.
As always, this retailer presented what it does best- consistent, traditional and predictable resort wear that for a certain crowd, is very wearable.
Next up was House of Sage, a retailer that traditionally presents a strong assortment of merchandise. While there were a few standout looks- army green riding pants with shocks of coral, cut-out Kelly green shorts with an oversized blouse- the overall presentation felt a little discombobulated and not what I’ve come to expect from the retailer. We know they’ve got great items in-store…perhaps it’s just an off season.
After a short break featuring a Jewell & Ginnie video short that had us dancing in our chairs, the shows were back on, this time showcasing a brand new crop of Emerging designers.
First on deck was designer Stephanie Mejia, who describes her collection as being inspired by defiance and grunge in women. Defiant and lovely it was. Mejia sent models almost sneering down the runway with pale skin and cavernous eyes created from shades of burgundy and deep plum. Gauzy, spider-web-like-pieces trailed underneath bulky knits, asymmetrical layers and innovative tailoring. There was deconstruction, there were velvets, there were cloaks. It was as if Logan Nietzel had produced a little baby muse to take his place this year. We adored it.
Following Mejia was Mary Labberton with her line, Javalina. After a bit of doom and despair, Labberton’s use of color and just enough whimsy perked the crowd up a bit. Gamines impishly flirted down the runway wearing what Labberton described as what happens when “the apocalypse hits Manhattan’s Upper East Side in the 1960’s”. Labberton kept all footwear in tones of futuristic silver adding diversity by playing with luxurious furs, trim lines and shades of russet, khaki, black and pale pink. Bouffant pony tails mingled nicely with cutesey cat-eye spectacles.
Anjelika Krishna proved to be underwhelming and sometimes strangely styled (a hoodie paired with a flowing coral gown?) but was note-worthy due to the designer’s construction. All pieces in the RTW line are crafted from organic fabrics, a belief behind which Krishna stands strongly. Gold detailing and 1960’s rock n’ roll spiced up long, asymmetrical and sometimes blasé pieces.
The last of the Emerging Designers proved to be the People’s Choice and Style Panel favorite. Cody Sai Adler-McAllister showed a “dark and mysterious” collection inspired by films such as The Fifth Element and the 1990’s television show Aeon Flux. Curious fabrics and cut-out shapes flounced into the tents in shades of army green, navy blue, gold, chartreuse and black. Drawstrings were utilized, big hair was incorporated and the crowd was smitten.
Rounding out the evening was CFW veteran and featured designer Lindsey Carter with Troubador. Since debuting at CFW in 2009, Troubador has come a long way. Carter sent out feminine pieces with a playful hint of masculine energy. Sheer, tea-length dresses were paired with smart Stetson hats. Tailored fall jackets were styled with extremely oversized, tied fabric bows at the neck. There were lovely men’s button-up inspired shirt dresses, billowing tops with fitted shorts and a really nice energy and cohesiveness about the work.
It was also a collection that relished in the details. Smart wool riding crops featured delightful pops of army green, jackets unexpected ruffle detailing, and visible linings with secret bursts of color.
If this doesn’t say it all, Carter’s appearance at the end of her presentation warranted several attendees standing to applaud.