For spring 2013, several major U.S. designers decided to restrain themselves with minimalist collections. It was a sharp contrast to the often over-the-top designs they are showing for fall in stores now. But that's the thing about fashion: Each season is a new opportunity to showcase something different.
The look: The influential Jacobs went counter to his fall collection of Dr. Seuss-like floppy hats, shiny dresses, embellished skirts and buckled booties with a 1970s mod-inspired, largely black and white collection that by his standards was remarkably restrained. He told Women's Wear Daily the collection was "brutal in its simplicity. That’s our new word for the season.”
Front row favorites: Ricky Martin, Hailee Steinfeld and Rose Byrne were barely in their seats before the show was over as Jacobs showed his collection at breakneck speed. It was over in a brisk 6-1/2 minutes.
Marc Jacobs highlighted black-and-white checks, stripes and geometric patterns in much of the collection.
The look: For fall, Karan mixed mascuIine and feminine styles with touches of Cabaret and Downton Abbey and pinstripes everwhere. Her spring 2013 show was much lighter, with a pared down salute to nature. Karen sent out unembellished dresses and gowns of floaty fabric in watery blues, sea greens and sunset pinks. The effect was like an ocean breeze, as styleswere not nearly as body-hugging as in past shows, although many were cut in a way to show off the back.
First look: Donna Karan oyster stretch paper cotton cropped shell and molded cotton/viscose jersey dress
Front row favorites: Bianca Jagger and Bernadette Peters, along with the Fashion Police's George Kostiopolis.
Houstonians in the audience: Donna Karan Ambassadors Sheridan Williams and Dancie Ware were front-and-center at the show.
Drama queen: Donna Karan's final look was this floating shell printed deep sea blue silk gazar strapless evening gown.
The look: Azrouël, too, said he drew inspiration from nature's architecture in designing his spring 2013 line. "There is a strength and stillness of nature, movement of fabrics and simplicity of designs to conjure up the image of an empowered woman," he explained in his program notes. Certainly there is a Zen feeling to his collection of simple silhouettes and unadorned styles in a soft color pallete of grey, light blue and pink.
Favorite look: This heather grey perforated cotton waffle knit dress.
Houston visit: Azrouël will showcase his collection at the Catwalk for a Cure luncheon and fashion show on Nov. 1.
Change of habit: The canvas brimmed hood shown on several models at the Yigal Azrouël show look fit for a nunnery, but the perforated cotton waffle knit sweatshirt, cotton emboridered eyelet skirt look much more up-to-date.
Simple and strong: Yigal Azrouël pink cotton canvas apron dress with criss-cross back.
The look: For her sportier DKNY line, Donna Karan seemed heavily influenced by the Olympic athletes with a collection of strong, unadored styles made of body-hugging neoprene and mesh jersey. Among the cool look for tough gals: Camouflage prints, parkas with leather sleeves and crinkly silver bomber jackets.
Shown here: DKNY white neoprene and mesh jersey dress closed the show.
DKNY black ponte and silk georgette riley camouflage printed rouche dress.
DKNY yellow-coated long anorak over black ponte dress with back mesh detail.
DKNY antique cotton twill utility parka with leather sleeves over black/antique nylon swimsuit.
DKNY jeans white tee and silver leather pencil skirt.