Like so many in the fash pack, I come to NY looking for simply great clothes. You know, that fabulous, understated, urban chicness that the Americans have made their own. I don’t come for Belgian deconstruction or Hoxton edginess, Italian glamour or French hauteur. I get that from other places. I come in search of what the American industry calls ‘sportswear’, not trackie bottoms like you might think, but easy separates that fit right into my wardrobe giving it a chic update without demanding a radical overhaul.
That timeless touch has, so far, mostly been missing from a lot of runways but it hit town today with a glamorous bang. The sun was out, the snow had stopped, it was 10am and time for Michael Kors and he left us in no doubt about the power of the American classic.
Against the thumping bass beat of U2, the glossy Kors posse hit the catwalk in a wave of neutral cashmeres. Layer upon layer of thick ribbed cashmere came in the shape of cowl-necked sweater dresses or infinity scarves or cocoon coats, in that uptown all-time classic colour combo of camel and grey; a perfect camel trench was layered over a shirt dress so simple it might sound boring but it was unexpectedly sexy; a military tailored coat was layered over mannish grey trousers and sheer mohair sweaters were layered over classic flannel skirts.
Kors couture does not tax the brain, but it does tickle the senses, and a double breasted mannish trouser suit with a nipped in waist and cashmere, mannish Chesterfield coats over charmeuse blouses looked simple, seductive and worth quite a lot of money.
Utility is an idea that New York’s Seventh Ave (the fashion district) holds dear, and so distressed leather aviator jackets and parkas featured as day-to-evening items.
Even the grand eveningwear was suitably low key; either as cashmere or matt sequined jersey columns.
It was up beat, glossy, glamorous and quintessentially American. It looked effortless, fresh and fuss-free. In hard times these are concepts to conjure with. The audience skipped off to the next show dreaming of swingy ponytails and humming along to ‘Native New Yorker’.
- Paula Reed in New York