For fall, Ralph Lauren is a man of many moods. The legendary designer usually presents a collection that is tightly focused on one topic — Downton Abbey, the French Riviera, a glamorous African safari. But his fall collection, which he debuted at New York Fashion Week, offers an eclectic range of looks for a variety of upscale lifestyles.
There's the English country look, exemplified by the opening number as supermodel Karlie Kloss appeared in a cashmere cardigan, silk blouse and baggy wool flannel trousers. There are 21 daywear outfits in the collection, featuring soft, cozy clothes in darkish shades of taupe, brown and olive. Actress Sienna Miller, sitting next to Vogue editor Anna Wintour on the front row, seemed taken with the mid-calf tweed culottes and comfy patchwork coats.
Lauren always excels in menswear-tailored looks for women, and this time, he presented a range of styles, from the traditional — big-shoulder double breasted jackets worn with taupe shirt and tie — to the flashy — a black-and-gold jacquard tuxedo jacket with a black shawl collar stands out.
There's also a rocker dandy edge to long velvet coats and ruffle white blouses worn with metallic jeans, a bit of Southwestern flair with blanket-patterned ranch coats and a fringe moment, with tweed capes and black suede pants dripping in swirling fabric.
For evening, Lauren returns to the elegance the brand is known for, with breathtakingly beautiful velvet evening gowns in crimson, amethyst and marine blue that evoke an old world feeling, while one of the closing numbers — a liquid gold Mikado evening skirt, worn with a black jersey turtleneck, showing a bare midriff — seems totally modern.
While the collection seemed a bit jumbled with so many varying looks, the message seemed clear: Lauren remains the master of luxe elegance — no matter what form it takes.