There was a lot to consider at Rodarte this season. From the nostalgic Seventies soundtrack, beginning with The Doors’ “The End” and graduating to Harry Nilsson’s “Everybody’s Talkin”, to the newly matured daywear featuring beautiful textures and all-over prints alongside contrasting sculptural and formless elements, it was difficult to form an immediate opinion on the Mulleavy sisters’ vision. And, that has to be a positive thing. Rarely is something complex digested easily. And if others in the Chelsea show-space where Rodarte’s collection for S/S 2011 was unveiled felt vaguely bewildered by the spectacle of earthy, unusual and subtly Eastern-inspired print and form, it was impossible to gauge – the audience reaction was overwhelmingly upbeat. The insanely celebrity-filled front row, where André Leon Talley sat literally hugging Diane Von Furstenburg, Kim Gordon and Elijah Wood talked, and Anna Wintour and Serena Williams chatted away (amazing), looked on in awe – and for good reason. This was the first collection by the Mulleavy's that appeared purposely wearable, and though Rodarte’s past collections of dreamy, elaborately constructed dip-dyed chiffon dresses have been what I consider to be flawless (and would actually love to wear on a daily basis), this series of intricately embroidered, multi-layered garments for spring looked like something that could step off the catwalk and onto the street with relative ease. It wasn't all grown up though - among the toned-down denim-jacquard shorts, plaid linen trousers, and leather dresses and skirts in metallic and earthy hues were some audacious dresses that we have come to know and love Rodarte for, namely a textured gold, cinched waist number with chunks of metal about the waist.
This series of intricately embroidered, multi-layered garments for spring looked like something that could step off the catwalk and onto the street with relative ease.