June 13, 2014 New York
Naeem Khan leads an exuberant life and keeps his cultural appetite stoked by constantly traveling for both business and pleasure. Following a Resort preview in New York, the designer took off for Mexico City, where he had plans to participate in a local industry event, before catching another flight to his native India for an inspiration trip. Khan's globe-trotting adventures inform his collections. The new lineup opened with a series of blue-and-white cocktail sheaths and off-the-shoulder peasant blouses featuring traditional Mexican embroidery. This season, Khan continued to expand his comparatively casual offerings, which have proven strong for sales. "I wanted to take eveningwear and make it fun and sexy," he said during the walk-through. There was an increased emphasis on easy sportswear shapes, evident in a group of stripe T-shirts and tennis sweaters updated in glam sequins. Similarly, Khan showed bugle-beaded tanks and matching tap short sets, which were targeted at young starlets in the market for modern red-carpet alternatives, as well as a sporty polo dress cut from a stretch charmeuse splashed with a manipulated cockatoo-feather motif. Digital prints are a relatively recent development for Khan, who typically opts for all-out embellishment instead. There was a new lightness to the plumage-printed numbers and maxi dresses screened with a graphic Moroccan door pattern, not being weighed down by all the bedazzling and handiwork. But Khan still incorporated plenty of his trademark decorations elsewhere. Art Deco appliqués reminiscent of the Chrysler Building appeared on best-selling caftans and column gowns. All in all, Khan was smart to advance a more laid-back tone while maintaining his signature sparkle.
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