Elizabeth and James
June 09, 2014 New York
Instead of pushing momentary trends, Ashley and Mary-Kate Olsen's contemporary Elizabeth and James line consistently offers clean, uncomplicated staples with a youthful twist. The designers' latest Resort collection subtly channeled a sporty beach vibe with its fleecy sailor stripe shirts, cozy fisherman sweaters, slim Bermuda shorts, and the metallic shower slides that were worn with each look. All of the nautical nods were here without being too overt. Those quintessential Cruise references mixed in seamlessly with minimalist tailored pieces such as nubby ivory car coats, drapey suiting separates (long vests provided a modern update to standard jackets), and strapless crepe jumpsuits featuring decorative D-ring closures. Elsewhere, the duo got creative with styling, notably showing a flirty skirt as a top paired with cropped, slouchy trousers. Over the past few seasons, accessories have become an increasingly important part of the E&J business, which is no surprise given the Olsens' CFDA Award-winning leather goods for The Row. Highlights here included delicate gold chokers, chic belt bags (yes, fanny packs are officially having a moment), and the label's premiere full-sized backpack. Updated in fabrics such as lizard-embossed leather or natural wool, the new "Cynnie" knapsack felt like a luxe update to your favorite childhood JanSport, and would be ideal for an afternoon bike ride around Montauk.