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Once again, Fresh Faces in Fashion was the most well-attended of the Fashion Focus shows. Cutbacks this year were obvious at the cocktail- and food-free "reception," as well as on the runway—there were fewer high-quality materials and embellishments than in previous years. But hey, even luxury fashion designers and brands are feeling the pinch.
Standouts included JLee Silver's collection, particularly the dresses. I liked a fitted brown sheath dress that betrayed the slightest bit of a red hem or underskirt and a chic little shift in a blue and black tie-dye-like print. The PR says the spring collection was inspired by "the beaches of the Hamptons and the dune grass at sunset." I could see it being worn by someone who's done very well for herself yet insists on continuing to reference an imagined bohemian past. She might be kind of annoying, but you have to admit she has style.
A blue cocktail dress featuring wild ruffles and whorls from Red Doll by Tatyana would be just the thing to break up the tedium of tasteful LBDs and glasses of white wine.
I always feel kind of bad for the men's designers at these shows. It's probably harder for men's designers in general to really make an impression: if they get too creative, men—especially American men—won't want to wear the stuff. If they play it safe, the differences come down to the detail, which can be hard to see on the runway. Andrei Savtchenko, the designer of menswear line Dorsia, went the subtle route. The PR says he's always been very particular about fit. The line stayed pretty low-key—button-downs, a bright blue cardigan, a leather jacket with jeans.