Oscar de la Renta delivered some necessary "Old-school glamour" to a fashion week still dominated by talk of the recession.
A testament to his abiding talent and success through the decades, fashion luminary Oscar de la Renta's was a front row populated by industry insiders, not celebrities. With a groomed Anna Wintour, Grace Coddington, fashion iconoclast Iris Apfel and young NY designer Zac Posen in prime positions, de la Renta revealed his radiant vision for the season ahead. Opening with a teal blue reinterpretation of a retro safari suit, de la Renta's collection nailed a refined, and modern, 50s slash 70s summery aesthetic. The mood was relaxed and luxurious in a collection embodying the essence of understated, elegant design. Loose silk column dresses in sumptuous coral, turquoise and chocolate were cinched high on the waist with leather belts, a stand-out khaki linen trench fell smartly below the knees and billowing sleeved shirts and shifts in silk organza, paired with gold accessories, worked a bohemian vibe. From clean, pared back lines, de la Renta soon stepped it up and took the collection from day well and truly into night. Glamorous floor-length gowns of lace and circular-cut out organza ruffles in vivid hues, worn alternately with black and white lace shawls over the head and shoulders, brought to mind a flamenco spirit, as did chantilly lace ensembles paired with braided hair and thick black eyeliner. As 'Sartorialist' Scott Schuman said following the show, de la Renta delivered some necessary "Old-school glamour" to a fashion week still dominated by talk of the recession. While wearable design is key at a time when dollars are scarce, there is something to be said about taking clothing out of the ordinary and allowing it the room to inspire.