June 10, 2012 New York
Chloé's Clare Waight Keller spoke of a "new romantic feel" for her Resort collection. Cap the N and the R and the comparison would still hold. There's been a whiff of the eighties about Waight Keller's Chloé since she took the reins, especially in the exaggerated volumes of her silhouettes, and that continues here. Crisper materials made a counterpoint to the looser shapes—there were acres of crunchy cotton poplin and cotton grosgrain, "keeping the sharpness within," as Waight Keller said—but overall, the designer emphasized ease. Many of her tops and dresses are basically a single square of fabric—an oversize handkerchief, really—cinched with embroidered waists or belted, obi-style. It's hard to imagine easier than dungarees, which is just how the designer described her all-in-one of the season, in washed silk georgette. Her "summer shearling" was toweling fabric, stitched into kimono tops or used as paneling on carrot trousers. It looked appealingly graphic when paneled onto those pants, but it might be the place where ease gets too easy.
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