January 12, 2011
With their last collection, Dean and Dan Caten used menswear as a lens through which to focus their sometimes over-vamped style. It worked nicely, and, as they say, if it ain't broke, don't fix it—use it to fuel your pre-fall collection, too. Here, a more military issue of menswear reigned. High, paper bag-waist shorts in army green featured oversize cargo pockets; worn with vivid florals, they gave a sort of South Pacific tinge to the whole. Variations on the theme included longer coats and that floral blooming again as a day dress. Then things took a turn toward the graphic, with shifts in black, white, and gray. A few of the latter looks, with their mandarin collars and the new gilted insignia the Catens used to adorn buckles and belts, suggested an Asian inspiration, and a forties-ish glamour. There was a lot going on here, though no doubt the designers feel variety can be a virtue in the showroom.