The last day of New York Fashion Week saw two of the city's fashion giants round off a mixed week with superb, accomplished collections that made some of the other designers look like amateurs.
Ralph Lauren had given some hints to his direction earlier in the week when images of the show's accessories were revealed, but the Spanish style lost no impact as a result. Gorgeous clothes in sophisticated colours ranging from the vibrant combination of turquoise and tomato red to utterly classic black and white came in silhouettes that combined volume and bodyhugging glamour. Crisp, loose shirts were teamed with tight, long skirts, neat tux jackets came with jodhpurs and bias-cut gowns featured flamenco-style ruffles on sleeves or as frilly trains. Berets and angled Andalucian hats, Zorro-style, tooled leather bags and dense gold matador embroidery on Capri pants and bolero jackets, and the Gipsy Kings on the soundtrack all kept the theme going, but individually the pieces were simply beautiful, and far from mere costume.
A couple of hours later, Francisco Costa rounded off the week at Calvin Klein, with his customary pared-back palette of putty, black and white, and a highly tailored take on the label's minimalist aesthetic.
It was a case of bringing the inside out, with exposed construction and seams on double-faced satin, with visible tucks and folds, giving the pieces a look of unfinished toiles. Among the prettiest pieces were dresses featuring an overlay in oversized abstract lace, looking like a sort of exoskeleton, and in spite of the strong concept, these were very wearable, flattering shapes.
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