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Before seeing the Gottex show Monday night, it was necessary to mentally prepare. A bunch of size zero models strutting down the runway in next to nothing? So, we chose to drink our Muscle Milk for dinner before making our way to the tents. Once inside, the crowd anxiously shifted in their seats, clearly agitated at the thirty minute delay. "Do you think we're going to miss the Marc show?" A couple from the front row could be heard saying. Marc was certainly the main course for the evening, but Gottex proved to be a worthy appetizer.
The inspiration for the collection was a modern look that didn't "sacrifice the brand's DNA". In order to do this, Molly Grad sticks to the customer she knows best: the well-traveled woman. The neutral color palette (yes, it's everywhere) was complemented by gold accessories in the form of belts, big bangles, and even embroidery and trim on the coverups—which, by the way, were exquisite; Printed, flowy, material with a robe-like feel that tied in the jacket trend. The bathing suits at Gottex are actual works of art, and Grad knows how to bring it out. Asymmetrical silhouettes, one shoulder numbers, sweetheart necks, cutouts on the bikinis, and fabulous draping really showed her talent as a designer. Moreover, the technical fabrics she uses (laminated tulle, anyone?!) verify her expertise. The final win for the designer was her use of color—beautiful, rich reds and blues that freshened up the entire collection.
It was when the collection transitioned into a Space Age feel that things seemed to take a turn for the worst. A couple of the bikinis featured a red, spiky, clothespin-esque neckline that looked uncomfortable and awkward, and once the black shiny materials made their way down the catwalk, one image came to mind: Lady GaGa. Shortly followed by the square, modern sunglasses with a black leotard adorned with black jewels, the art was lost. A space-age swimsuit may be okay for an electro concert, but not the beach. Those are just some tan-lines that will never be in style.—Phillip Picardi