"You all know I love a resort," Michael Kors told the crowd of editors and retailers who gathered in his Forty-second Street showroom yesterday. This year, though, Kors has skipped the beach and used a recent trip to Palm Springs for inspiration. Sunnylands, the historic Annenberg estate in Rancho Mirage, and Bob Hope's former residence, which is currently on the market ("A bit too steep for us," Kors laughed), provided the backdrop for his twenty-first-century update of seventies lines. The piece that will land in magazine shoots is a leather shift-dress riff on YSL's famous Saharienne; Kors' laces come in shiny gold chain. But there was plenty here with more everyday appeal, including sleekly well-cut flares that grazed the bottom of the models' platform wedges, and many convincing takes on the decade's midi-length skirt. Our favorite was black with metal lacing below the waistband and worn with a sleeveless black bodysuit.
Kors isn't the first designer to explain that Resort, given the amount of time the clothes stay on the selling floors, has to be many things to many people. In the mix was everything from cutout maillots—"The weirder the better," he said of his bathing suits' success at retail—to "front row in February" coats. Pulling it all together were the leopard and giraffe prints, and the simple color palette—just white, black, suntan, pool blue, and geranium pink. "You can't have a Slim Aarons picture without geraniums," Kors joked. You also can't have an Aarons shot without a caftan. Kors did his for after-dark in ocelot-print-embroidered nude tulle with wispy sleeves long enough to graze the patio.