“That guy has a lot of ideas,” Linda Fargo told me about Phillip Lim as we drove off yesterday after the unveiling of his S/S 2013 collection at 309 West 33rd Street. The signs of a good show always rear toward its ending, during a moment when you can’t help think, That’s it already? Give me more.
It’s a lovely thing to maintain an innate ability to reinvent oneself season after season while concurrently conserving familiarity among consumers; before you can even find yourself blinded by the label in the Phillip Lim division of your local specialty boutique, you know. And you’re ready. While I don’t mean to play favorites, this was indubitably my favorite collection of New York Fashion Week thus far which in effect means, I am playing favorites.
And though I know, it seems the highly personal opinion of a blogger, any blogger–because so tailored to the subjective opinion of the blogger in question, tends to weigh lightly on a collection at large, this isn’t some sort of subliminal, “my opinion is better than yours,” summoning.
Never mind the Andy Warhol branded Nars products that were graciously distributed at show time. This isn’t about that. Not even the kooky I Love Nueva York graphic tees that had “wear me with pants that include a makeshift waist tie every single day,” written across them (though they did, and said pants were featured in the collection at large.) In fact it didn’t even have much to do with the bright pink suede overalls and corresponding bomber jacket that quite vividly reminded onlookers of the power Barbie once held–and subsequently that a color so girly, so bright, so…Lisa Frank can command the power to sit in with the cool crowd.
No, the amicability of the collection was precisely because, as Linda Fargo put it, Phillip Lim is a man with many ideas. One season’s makeshift scarf sweater mufflers in a color palette abiding exclusively by a code of grey, black and white could be the following season’s lime green pants and frayed embellished jacket. And what’s more, these ideas are always precisely in tune with the vibe of fashion week at large–essentially just cut up, reconfigured and ultimately tailored to suit his eye exclusively.
His interpretation of spring layering came in the form of sheer paneling–another extensive trend this fashion week–over and under bits of cotton and elaborate appliques. Bare midriffs were exploited in unconventional spring fabrics and his use of the color (or lack thereof,) du season: white, was met with jaunty plaids and tropical/garden hybrid florals.
The resounding noise of wearability found itself circulating through this collection too but not in the same way it has previously this week. No, this is more a tale of “wear with caution: cool girls only.”