January 29, 2012 New York
The sportiness of race cars inspired Akris' Albert Kriemler to go shorter, sleeker, sheerer, and sunnier for Spring, but he's relaxed into his more restrained Swiss groove for his latest pre-collection. That sections of his new offering were divided into color-coded blocks called Steam, Wheat, and Steel should give you some idea. He was still thinking of travel, but of a less heart-in-your-mouth variety: The season's inspiration came courtesy of the Trans-Siberian Railway and its stately journey, in days gone by, between Moscow and the Far East. (To set the appropriate mood, he shot the lookbook in Le Train Bleu, the nineteenth-century train car-turned-restaurant at the top of Bloomingdale's.) The Trans-Siberian itself, and the views from it, provided the photo print that has become a house signature, here emblazoned on dresses, tops, and soft cashmere coats. Overall, fluid tailoring and smart outerwear (from almost-casual to full-on luxe in natural mink) defined this quietly elegant collection. The Akris woman travels business class, no doubt, but there's more than enough here to exercise her imagination.
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