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Here, Refinery29 weighs in on the shows that took place yesterday, the second thrilling day of Fashion Week. And now, what you need to know about Thursday's runways.
· THOM BROWNE
Soaking up Thom Browne's spring/summer surf-style extravaganza banished any notions that menswear must be boring. The sand-strewn show was kicked off by a quartet of towel-wrapped, swim-capped and goggled lifeguards who watched over the production from lifeguard stands—as their whistles sounded, the real performance began. We loved the short-sleeved jackets topping long-sleeved ones (practical, no, cool, yes), the deep-V varsity sweaters, plaid on plaid, short-short suits, and a brilliant tuxedo jacket trimmed in terry-cloth. A suit crafted entirely from gray rosettes raised eyebrows, but reinforced our belief that Thom Browne's presentations and perspective will never ever be predictable.
· JEREMY LAING
Like a beacon in the storm of shows this week, Jeremy Laing turned out a stellar collection of architectural dresses, devastatingly swank trousers, and shorts all inspired by the arctic terrain. The 27-year-old Canadian has an incredible gift with construction and atypical fabrics—rear panels on dresses created fresh proportions and appealing angles, while inspired seaming mimicked the horizon line at sunrise. His finale look—the Borealis dress in green silk studded with Swarovski crystals—made the crowd swoon, literally, and reaffirmed why this exceptional fellow is certainly a talent worth celebrating.
· KAREN WALKER
Inspired by one of her favorite flicks, the Marx Brothers' Day at the Races, New Zealander Karen Walker delivered another fun and fabulous collection of teen-queen-style pieces all fit for a quirky-cool grown-up. Walker has a knack for fashioning a great dress, short or long, and this time 'round, she didn't disappoint with flowing floral gownettes (ie: fetching ruffled lawn dresses) and irresistible short and sexy things like a chambray sash mini dress. Other must-haves included a truly awesome khaki trench, sun hats, and high-waisted shorts that make us want to hit the elliptical.
· SAMANTHA PLEET
Instead of looking to the past or faraway lands for inspiration, Brooklyn designer Samantha Pleet found the muse for her fourth collection in her own backyard—or to be specific—her grandmother’s backyard. This season the 23-look collection consisting of signature rompers, baby-doll dresses, and short-shorts was highlighted in an 8-minute film titled She Comes in Colors shot in 16 millimeter at Pleet’s grandmother’s house. Pleet’s collection was romantic, featuring silk playsuits in primary colors, jodhpurs paired with skinny riding jackets, and strapless two-tone button front cocktail dresses.
· JENNI KAYNE
Restrained and surprisingly strong, Jenni Kayne's spring/summer collection favored cheery approachability over innovation or heavy concepts. With a nod to 1920s elegance, Kayne's showcase featured reams of sensibly patterned chiffon, cropped charcoal jackets in wool and leather, and a yellow herringbone pencil skirt. Most notably, the color palette (canary, indigo, and chocolate-brown) was vibrant, particularly in the lovely floral-print gowns and minis, while remaining balanced and tasteful.
Elegant and exceedingly adult, Thuy's presentation of cocktail-hour stunners twinkled in the natural light that flooded her airy show space. Indeed, if anything, it was how these mature designs caught and reflected light that impressed more than anything else (though the general paleness of her models held against the collection's palette of white, silver, blue, and gray made us question whether these designs would work on less fair-skinned customers.) Thuy's lightly bejeweled double-sleeved dress in white was a standout as were her high-waisted puff skirts, feminine tuxedo jackets, and metallic tiered dresses.
· LERARIO BEATRIZ
This very proper, very feminine collection of pale white, blue, and black flapper throwbacks was quiet, charming, and a tad too sedate. The more complicated compositions—a crocheted lace number with delicate sequin work and a chiffon patchwork dress—ran too far into preciousness though simpler stuff—a white parachute jumpsuit, a winged dress with pockets, and a metallic cap-sleeve jacket— was flattering and refreshingly wearable.
· VICTOR GLEMAUD
One always looks forward to the latest slight-of-hand men's designs by Victor Glemaud. Though this spring/summer collection was far less left-of-center than past presentations, the Frenchmen didn't disappoint. Always tweaking traditional images, Glemaud's current line of sherbet-colored Bermuda shorts, tight-waisted, loose-legged cotton trousers, and slouchy jackets was beach boy but never beach bum. Most impressive was his continued use of faux collars, trick double sleeves, and pleats for the illusion of a layer look. A rainbow of pastel slip-ons by K. Jacques punctuated each sunny springtime look.