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Milking It: Frank Tell's Sci-Fi Spring

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Frank Tell—the young New York-via-Spain designer known as much for his age as his designs—showed his spring collection in a series of runway presentations yesterday morning at Milk Studios. Set in an massive studio on the 8th floor, a thin crowd—including Olivia Palermo—stood haphazardly around a makeshift U-shaped catwalk delineated with a series of fluorescent tube lights. Tell's collection, characterized by hard lines, asymmetry, and a fairly cold palate of blacks, whites, silver-grays and coppers, was hard-edged, robotic, and retro-futuristic. A very far cry from the feminine flounce of his debut collections, but interesting and will certainly garner him attention.

Tiny tailored jackets in brocades and stretch knits had stiff Dynasty shoulders and were paired with tiny metallic skirts—some draped with asymmetrical contrast detail. Pants came in two varieties—coppery, glittery harems and the ubiquitous (and easy to sell) legging in stretch leather. An injection of raciness was provided by slinky, sparkling bustier tops and dresses as well as a series of pieces with open backs, cut-outs and key holes. Copper life-size chicken feet were used successfully as jacket closures; unsuccessfully as epaulets. Full runway looks came off as a bit robotic, intimidating, and weird for real life; but individual pieces were wearable and luxurious (though not particularly summery). A big jump for Tell—he's growing up.
· All Fashion Week Spring 2010 Stories [Racked]