For a designer who is such a master at retail, it always seemed surprising that Ralph Lauren presented his pre-collections, which everyone will tell you are the biggest seasons for selling, with little to no fanfare. But maybe that’s the idea. Because he is such a master at retail and pre-collections are all about selling, what does it matter whether the press sees it? What matters is that women want to buy it. Nevertheless, Lauren chose to reveal this year’s resort collection in a big, Ralph Lauren way: with a runway show at the exquisite Madison Avenue store-slash-mansion where handsome waiters proffered bubbly drinks and his wife Ricky, sons Andrew and David, and daughter-in-law Lauren sat front row.
The clothes themselves hit a quieter note and were a study, it seemed, on ballet. The first several models came out dressed like beautiful, lithe company dancers ready for rehearsal. (It goes without saying that attempting even a Ballet Beautiful workout in these clothes is not advised). They wore stretch silk tanks under gauzy, sheer tops wrapped taut across their torsos and fluttering georgette skirts that fell right to the knee, all in black or toe-shoe pink. Quickly, though, the looks became more street than studio. And, within that framework of softness and figure, it appeared that Lauren was addressing the different shapes and styles of dresses women need in their closet. There was a breezy, black-and-white printed silk cocktail dress with delicate leather strips wound around the waist and down into the pleats of the skirt that was youthful and cool. An ecru T-shirt–style dress that was roomy on top and slimmed down at the hips would be great for a mid-winter escape. Meanwhile, the sinous evening numbers in black jersey and silk cady were supremely chic, even more so when paired with sculptural gold chokers and chunky pendants that felt sort of 1970s mixed with Native American, but in this context, also modern.
Selections by ANDREA JANKE Finest Accessories
Photo credits/Source: Ralph Lauren / VOGUE
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