January 13, 2010
If Adam Lippes' 2010 plans are anything to go by, we can call an end to the recession. The designer has a swanky new showroom, a third boutique recently opened in Philadelphia, and a Nantucket outpost is coming this summer. His pre-fall clothes, by contrast, are slightly more muted than usual. Instead of the vivid jewel-toned tank dresses and slouchy tees he's known for, Lippes emphasized menswear-inspired tailoring in subdued shades. A charcoal pantsuit, slim black jackets, and a pair of dusty turquoise tweed trousers proved the designer has range. He has good business sense, too: These pieces were cut in lightweight wool-silk blends, allowing for a smooth transition from the easy-breezy summer wares they'll be replacing on the sales floor. As for the flirty little frocks—Lippes' bread and butter—he's done some thinking there, too: A silk T-shirt dress with a pleated chiffon skirt unzipped at the waist, making it three pieces for the price of one. With smart ideas like that, it's no wonder the brand is on an upward trajectory.