A Lot of Sound and Supermodels, Signifying Not Much

With this collection, shown at Doubles, the supper club in the Sherry-Netherland, Mr. Maxwell has effectively seized the uptown ground once owned by Jason Wu, who seems to have entirely lost direction, detouring between striped cotton suiting here, haute bohemia there and a selection of Martha Graham-meets-Madame Grès dance dresses.

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Victoria Beckham: Spring 2018

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And there was the safe option; the one that did not insist too much. Victoria Beckham, for example, who said she had consciously decided to avoid showpieces in favor of “clothes I want to wear now,” which meant a combination of the strong (broad-shouldered Holmesian plaid shirting) and the soft (sheer organzas layered atop striped sheaths in minty shades).

Or Brock Collection, with its lacy milkmaids-at-the-Petit Trianon cherry-print frocks, rough linens and Watteau florals. They had a quiet appeal, if not a visceral currency.

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Eckhaus Latta: Spring 2018


Which is what made another show in Bushwick, Eckhaus Latta, worth seeing. Held, coincidentally, in a site across the street from the Wang Fest, a “space for engaging conversations and collaborations across creative disciplines,” according to the program (which is also a pretty good description of the six-year-old label designed by Zoe Latta and Mike Eckhaus), it felt worlds away.

Not because it was escapist, but because it wasn’t. Because the clothes, which are a kind of petri dish of associative splicing, grapple honestly with what is on the designers’ minds: questions of gender and difference and the details of fallible beauty framed in low-slung trousers and shirts cropped and tailored to the navel, knit slip dresses trailing streamers from seams; and a stretch cardigan unbuttoned to expose a very pregnant belly.

“We are here and we have no way to know what tomorrow smells like,” went a line of the prose poem in the program. Um, right.

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Public School : Spring 2018

CreditGio Staiano/Nowfashion

It was abstruse but weirdly true. Just like the refrain, “Come again,” that showed up the next morning on shorts and shopping bags and the back of sweats at a notably good Public School show (Maxwell Anderson and Dao-Yi Chow can do more with a plaid shirt, a nylon anorak and a luggage strap than you’d ever imagine).

Though perhaps adding a question mark to the end of the phrase would make it even more fitting.

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