Oscar de la Renta traded in the church on Park Avenue where he’s been holding his shows for several years in favor of his new showroom high above 42nd Street. The space is currently raw and unrenovated, quite unlike the meticulously constructed Resort clothes on his runway. Then again, the setting was rather apt. De la Renta took Picasso as inspiration, his Cubist period in particular, and you’ve got to think that the artist would’ve appreciated the midtown views of jutting skyscrapers.
With the exception of a few poolside getups (including one particularly racy look on VS angel Candice Swanepoel), this was as urban and urbane as de la Renta’s Cruise collections get, long on skirtsuits and sleeveless sheaths. Picasso came into it via the colorful decoupaged embroideries, the graphic black-and-white scribble prints, and the brooches, belt buckles, and necklaces that looked like they could’ve been lifted from a canvas or sculpture. It was a rare outfit that wasn’t beaded, patchworked, or otherwise embellished—evidence of handwork was everywhere you looked, just how his ladies like it.
The artist’s Spanish roots provided a through line to the collection’s matador jackets; high-waist, narrow-cut pants; and pompom trim flamenco hats made of construction paper. If the headgear was a bit of a head-scratcher, a polka-dot evening dress was de la Renta at his best. And there was more where that came from. Flouncy gowns in shades of flamenco red, blossom pink, and vivid green will be lighting up dance floors come the holidays. Maybe it’s the new address; this de la Renta show was full of life.
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