Mark McNairy's Fall '13 New Amsterdam show ended with a parade of moody models sucking their teeth and throwing penis-doodle-print handkerchiefs at the audience (apparently, they were inspired by Superbad). Needless to say, his men's and women's ranges—which fell somewhere between preppy and perverse—had a bit of a frat-house vibe. Irreverent was the word: Some of the best bits on the men's side were a camo coat embellished with daisies (it was surprisingly masculine); colorful plaid shirts and jackets; a hooded coat lined with peekaboo polka dots; and leather sweatpants that bunched up at the calf. The fleece cargo sweatpants and cropped zip-calf meggings were less successful, but McNairy's slouchy pinstriped trousers—rolled up at the ankles and paired with a quirky tie and cozy cardigan—were a smart take on formal gone casual.
The collection had its humorous moments. His-and-hers jeans printed with wacky, angry clowns and smiley faces were silly fun—put those in the "strengths" category. Beanies stitched with "Howdy" were also grin-inducing, but some of the other sartorial jokes—cowboy hats, wool Mexican wrestler masks—fell flat.
For the girls there were fantastic brogues, loafers, and dirty bucks (footwear is one of McNairy's signatures), and an adorable camo pant, navy toggle coat, and yellow bow tie combo. Much of the rest, though, seemed like something you might sport around the dorm on a Sunday morning. Leather soccer shorts pulled and tugged in the wrong places. So did a pair of confusing skinny-fit khakis. And a sporty leather skirt and sweatshirt didn't quite work.
This is only McNairy's second season designing full men's and women's ranges for his eponymous label. When asked about his future plans, the designer said, "More of the same." Fair enough—the line already appeals to a certain breed of downtown gent, and if he makes his woman a little cooler to fit in with his Fall guy (and loses the genitalia jokes), he could have a cult hit on his hands.