December 13, 2013 New York
For its first-ever Pre-Fall collection, J Brand kept things straightforward. For the most part, creative director Donald Oliver followed the same brief that he laid out for Spring: Create a bunch of urbane pieces, refined in their detail, that could be dressed up and/or worn with J Brand jeans. Indeed, quite a lot felt familiar here, including the separates done in a neoprene-like fabric, and the preponderance of biker jackets (the best of which, in a khaki corrugated cotton, doubled as a coat with a zip-off hem). The tailoring was classy, with a bit of a tuxedo accent that also came through in the bibbed shirting. Jeans—a key feature, of course—were either slightly baggy or second-skin, with a new sateen finish. It was all quite commercial, very much the point of a Pre-Fall collection. A little more experimentation will be welcome come the Fall 2014 season.