"It's an interweaving of different embellishments and embroideries from all over. I just sort of picked my favorites and brought them back to New York City to be handcrafted here," said Nanette Lepore backstage before her Fall runway show. The #HandCraftedInNY theme (guests were encouraged to share that hashtag on social media) tied in nicely with the designer's longstanding commitment to preserving the city's Garment District. She recently met with Mayor Bill de Blasio to discuss the cause, and outfitted his wife and daughter for his inauguration back in January.
Lepore opened with a group of looks in purple—the color of more like half the lineup—that ranged from deep shades of bordeaux and cassis to shocking magenta and violet. Perhaps the colorway was a tribute to her daughter Violet on her sixteenth birthday. Addressing her youthful customer's everyday needs, Lepore offered office-appropriate suiting separates such as a sharp, pleated jacket styled with a waist-defining belt. On the more playful, weekend-ready side of the equation were boldly feminine dresses including a bohemian, "handloom" patterned style that looked cool topped with a fuzzy mohair cardigan. Meanwhile, a Lurex-flecked turtleneck paired with a densely embroidered midi skirt highlighted the collection's artisanal feel, as did the gray flannel finale number, which was intricately embellished with a magpie assortment of sequins and beads.
"I like the idea that you can start the season with long ditzy skirts and dresses, and then start piling on alpaca sweaters and very utilitarian coats," said Lepore. Noteworthy outerwear items included a tailored, menswear-ish topper with an iridescent sheen, as well as a variety of shearling-trimmed coats; the fur occasionally seemed a bit too hairy, like it needed a trim. Ultimately, it was the cozy knits and longer lengths here that felt like Lepore's freshest proposals.