Daryl Kerrigan celebrated her brand's 20th anniversary at her show at Gavin Brown today. It was a quiet celebration—or, quiet aside from the drumming provided by Gang Gang Dancer Lizzi Bougatsos, among others—as the moment was marked solely by the zine-style retrospective of Kerrigan's career that showgoers found at their seats. Young designers with a trendy fetish for the nineties should try to get their hands on that catalog; they'll find plenty of ideas in there to plunder.
As for Kerrigan, she's been plundering herself all along. Today's show proved, again, that she doesn't have much use for novelty for novelty's sake; her collection was full of tried-and-true silhouettes, none more so than the perennial leather leggings she sent out in the show's last exit. Kerrigan has been doing those pants since 1995. "You know," she said after the show, "I have my shop, so I know what works; I know what women come back for. I don't need to experiment on the runway." With that attitude, Kerrigan isn't going to regain her Queen of Cool reputation anytime soon, not that she cares. But buzz factor or not, there was plenty of cool to go around; to wit, the pair of slouchy cuffed shorts in bright red Tencel, the sharp navy jumpsuit with a diagonal zip, those jodhpurs sliced open at the thigh. Also worthy of note was Kerrigan's "jump-dress," a balloon-skirted cross between a dress and a jumpsuit that was the sole new silhouette in the show.
Not that there wasn't news. Many of the coolest pieces in this collection were made in collaboration with the painter Spencer Sweeney, who contributed abstract prints. A boldly colored placement print Kerrigan put on black was especially good, and especially-especially good in a pair of silk slit harem pants. Very easy, very chic; exactly the kind of thing women come back for.