February 17, 2008
Pringle of Scotland has so thoroughly severed itself from its roots as a classic manufacturer of argyle golfing sweaters that it's now completely unrecognizable. Under Clare Waight Keller, an ex-Gucci designer, its makeover is as an international luxury brand, but it's one that is still in search of an identity convincing enough to stand up to scrutiny on a runway. Some of the pieces that Waight Keller showed had merit, but it was hard going to pick them out. She does have a feeling for knitwear: There were a couple of intricately constructed knit dresses with tight torsos and flared skirts; trapeze-shaped cardigans and sweaters done in a chunky diagonal stitch looked modern and well made. Later in the show, a curly-haired gray shearling coat and a jacket with vaguely forties shoulder lines and embroidery on the bodice were strong, too. All in all, though, that was not enough to erase the feeling that this collection would be better seen on a rail in a showroom.