There's nothing like fashion week to make you hate your own closet. We're what, half a week into New York fashion week, and I already have a compulsive need to re-do my entire wardrobe. And I'm just going to say now, there are tons and tons of little party dresses on the runway. It's not just me focusing on what I like, I swear! As for trends, I think we're moving away from the '80s and heading into a softer, more '70s-inspired season.
Richard Chai, Alexander Wang, Alexander Wang: Richard Chai somehow manages to make a slouchy, drapey, knee-length dress in a crazy-trippy print look casual and sexy at the same time. The inspiration of Alexander Wang's show was rebellious girls that made their way into the football locker room and re-purposed all their stuff. So this white dress is tighty-whitey inspired (dying of laughter), and I can kind of see it, but it just looks so chic. The tiny cut outs, the double neckline, the long sleeves against the short body--it's a new, fresh take on last season's little body-con dress. And that little leather jacket? I die. It has a bit of an aviator vibe, a bit of a '70s vibe, and it hits at the absolute perfect place on the waist. That boy can do a motorcycle jacket like nobody's business.
Boy by Band of Outsiders, Yigal Azrouel, Yigal Azrouel: You know I love Boy by Band of Outsiders. That bandage skirt is like Herve Leger on crack--just look at the twisted, woven detail. The baggy button-up casually tucked into such a sexy skirt is a fantastic day to night look, and...I really want that skirt. Really badly. I think I'm warming up to Yigal Azrouel. I used to hate, hate, hate his stuff, but this collection and his last resort collection left me weak in the knees. I love the grey/toxic yellow/black color palette from the spring collection. This dress takes the sheer collar trend that was big last season, and combines it with a new take on the little bandage dress. Like at BbBoO (that's an awkward abbreviation), the way that the bandage stripes are two-tone and broken up is a little edgy, a little quirky, and totally refreshing. And aside from the fact that this second model desperately needs a bra, or nipple covers, or something, that asymmetrical tank, bandage skirt, anorak combination is genius. I love styling tricks like throwing on a big, masculine jacket over a feminine, fitted little silhouette.
All Jason Wu: What can I really say about Jason Wu? Boy is genius. Just genius. What I really liked about this collection was that you could see how it had evolved from his last show, how he'd reinterpreted similar pieces for a fresh new look. The floral detail on the top of that magenta dress is divine, especially against the stark black band at the waist. This middle dress is almost a little Erin Fetherston to me (is that ever a bad thing?), and the bubble skirt could look bulky, but when you pair it with such a cinched waist and a great deep-v it's perfectly balanced. With the subtle sheen of the fabric, it's screaming Cinderella story. This last dress might be my favorite thing so far. You take a slightly conventional print, polka dots, put it in an unexpected color scheme, and then drape it into a drop dead gorgeous, sickeningly amazing silhouette, and you've got magic. The lightness of the fabric goes perfectly with the tulip shape of the skirt, the sheerness at the shoulder and cutaway at the hem at a bit of sex appeal, and I'd literally sell my kidney for this dress. I wish I was joking.
Rag & Bone, Nicole Miller, Cushnie et Ochs: I never thought I'd say this, but those slouchy jodhpur/legging pants at Rag & Bone look so right. Don't quote me on that. The geometric cut outs and asymmetrical sleeves on this Nicole Miller dress are a little '80s, and the fit is on-trend with the whole body-con mini dress movement, but since it's so simple and in such a neutral color, this is a real investment piece. Just look at the panelling detail at Cushnie et Ochs. I don't even have anything to say about it. I mean, cut outs, metallic sheen, ruching, a body-con mini, and all in the same dress? Just steal my bank account now. It'll be faster.
Cynthia Steffe, Cynthia Rowley, Charlotte Ronson: Like at Yigal, throwing on a sporty piece of outerwear, like that anorak or this vest, over a cute little party dress makes for a totally charming outfit. It looks unstudied, but polished and chic. I'd love this Cynthia Rowley dress for the cut alone, with that flirty bottom ruffle, but the twisted, ink splotch/watercolor print adds a quirky, slightly dark element to this dress that makes it totally irresistible. Now, I'm no Charlotte Ronson fan, but this crop top with chain trim/chain-belted wrap mini combo done in pale pink and grey is killing me. The top and chain are a little '80s, the skirt has a bit of a last season's Balenciaga vibe (very toned down, but still), and even the ruched bike shorts aren't that bad.
Richard Chai: style.com, Alexander Wang: style.com, Boy by Band of Outsiders: style.com, Yigal Azrouel: style.com, Jason Wu: style.com, Rag & Bone: style.com, Nicole Miller: style.com, Cushnie et Ochs: style.com, Cynthia Steffe: style.com, Cynthia Rowley: style.com, Charlotte Ronson: style.com