Billy Reid's Fall '14 collection began when he was making a range of blankets for his store. "That process led to all these different textures," said Reid. "So we really let the process drive it, and those blanket textiles became coats and tailored clothing."
Reid's most striking throw-turned-topper came in the form of a full-length brushed plaid coat. In a blend of gray, taupe, and rust, it seemed the picture of luxury as it swayed down the catwalk over gray tweed trousers and a handsome herringbone jacquard sweater in the same hues. This ensemble epitomized the rugged elegance that ran throughout the collection. As is often the case, Reid's Fall man likes to look smart, but isn't afraid to get his hands dirty (with the exception of the guy donning cream moleskin jeans and a sharp camel coat—whoever wears that will want to avoid the grit).
Pleat-front trousers, tactile knits, cashmere suits, and casual jackets and pants in sumptuous camel hair all stood out as fresh iterations of good old-fashioned classics. A few looks had a Nashville rocker vibe. For instance, one model with shoulder-length hair wore a pair of cherry velvet pants and a chestnut haircalf peacoat. Separately, each of these pieces had its merits, but together they felt a touch contrived. On the other hand, a navy leather bomber and aubergine plaid pants hit all the right notes.
This was a strong showing for Reid, though it did have some flaws. The cargo pants—tapered with elasticized ankles—came off a bit juvenile alongside his sophisticated wares. Ditto some mini-fox-print button-downs and polos. And while rabbit fur contributed a welcome flair to the lapels or linings of coats and cardigans, a model wearing a full fur vest atop a nubby gray hoodie looked out of place and downright uncomfortable—like a child stuffed into a snowsuit. All in all, though, the collection adhered to the rustic dandyism that Reid has so clearly perfected. And whether they're city dwellers or country gents, his clients will find lots of lasting staples in this Fall lineup.