>> Peter Som culled influence from '70s film The Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie and Wallis Simpson for Pre-Fall 2012, resulting in an assortment of prim separates steeped in cheeky Surrealist edge. Lean trousers, mod jackets, crewneck sweaters, and pleated frocks — Som staples — were done up in leather, lipstick-brights, houndstooth, and two knockout prints: a large-scale floating jewel pattern and a sunset floral ocelot. "It's a ladylike approach to dressing, but a little undone," Som explained.
>> Pre-Fall 2012 has Prabal Gurung forgoing his signature glitz and instead opting for something else: everyday wearability. His reference point — the rough-and-tumble grittiness of life in India — is apparent not so much in the elegantly crafted separates on offer, but more in the spirit of powerful fluidity that surrounds them. "It can be harsh, really, but it's still beautiful," the designer explained.
In keeping with recent tradition, Gurung's also released a video to accompany the collection. This season's offering: a hypnotic, kaleidoscopic rendering, set to the tune of DJ Pictureplane's song "Body Mod" and featuring models Alana Zimmer, Hanne Gaby, Kate King, and Ming Xie.
>> Monogrammed suits, argyle sweater dresses, buffalo plaid ponchos — there was a bit of something for everyone at Stella McCartney's Pre-Fall 2012 presentation. Held at New York's West Village restaurant, One If By Land, Two If By Sea, the presentation offered up a nice helping of what McCartney does best: Elegantly-crafted separates and dresses that feel chic, but don't take themselves too seriously. "Pre-Fall has a wider starting point, so it’s about giving a voice to the different facets of a woman," McCartney said. "It’s less about referencing something specific and more . . . psychological." See the entire collection — including accessories — and scenes from the presentation here.
>> Taylor Tomasi Hill's mini collection for Lane Crawford launched this week in Hong Kong, and now it's available to shop online — worldwide. The seven-piece capsule — priced from $250 to $510 on LaneCrawford.com — embodies just the kind of irreverent chic that's made Tomasi Hill a street style favorite. Among the goodies: a strapless tux dress, a flippy sequined mini, vividly-hued floral-print pants, an ivory-and-hot pink pencil skirt, and a leather-and-lace blouse. "I am fond of things that don't necessarily look as they should go together," Tomasi Hill — who recently signed on as Moda Operandi's artistic director — explains. "Something unexpected always adds an element of interest to an outfit." Click through to see the entire collection — including the lookbook, which Tomasi Hill also styled and modeled.
>> If a sleek downtown type became smitten with the English countryside, this is what she'd wear: trim button-downs tinged with jockey details, super-slim jodhpur leggings, turtlenecks made of leather, textured wool dresses, and lots and lots of fur. The Olsens are calling it "equestrian-meets-aristocrat" — we're calling it exactly what we want right now.
>> Bundle up. The parka had a big presence on the Fall 2011 runways — from Rag & Bone to Altuzarra (left), the options on offer were aplenty. And with the likes of Phillip Lim, Jason Wu, and Alexander Wang all showing versions of the parka's lighter-weight cousin — the anorak — for Spring 2012, it seems that sporty toppers are here to stay. Click through for five stylish ways to wear yours, this Winter and beyond.
Photo by Greg Kessler
>> Phoebe Philo pumped up the volume for Pre-Fall 2012, working some serious mass into her signature strong-lined silhouettes. Pants were cut generously through the hip, and jackets looked ultra-roomy with the addition of large lapels and rounded shoulder seams. Peplums, bows, and a smattering of patchwork added just a hint of playfulness, while shiny leather and textural fur provided contrast to the otherwise stark palette of navy, gray, and black.
>> The complete Jason Wu for Target lookbook has finally arrived. Inspired by French New Wave films and the actress Jean Seberg, the 53-piece capsule features a selection of seriously covetable separates — blouses with Peter Pan collars, pleated skirts, and nautical-tinged dresses — as well as a hefty assortment of luxe-looking handbags and accessories. "My goal was not to duplicate anything from my main collection," Wu explains. "Instead I designed completely new clothes and accessories that reflect my taste and have a voice of their own." With everything in the collection priced under $60, it seems that soon everyone will be able to afford a little piece of Wu to call their own as well. Click through to see the entire collection, hitting stores February 5th.
At left, an image from the Jason Wu for Target ad campaign.
>> For Alber Elbaz, it's all about what's fresh — even as this year marks the designer's 10th at the helm of Lanvin. To celebrate, Elbaz has worked "new fabrics, new technologies, and new volumes" into Pre-Fall, combining statement-making shapes with some very innovative materials. Full-skirted frocks are done up in lace-bonded wool, oversized trenches come in patent leather gabardine, and flouncy cocktail dresses are constructed from airy tech fabrics. Large-scale cameo necklaces, square-buckle belts, and super-svelte leather gloves punctuate the looks.