Band of Outsiders
February 09, 2013 New York
It was tempting to get distracted by the rich possibilities of Bogie and Bacall films being remade as video games. But the clothes snapped you back to attention. The striking thing about this collection was that the looks were very womanly—there were menswear references in the pinstriped shirtdresses, and in Sternberg's variety of classic wool suiting materials, but atypically for Band, there wasn't a gamine in sight. These were full-fledged, curve-having, sexually confident Band of Outsiders women. "Dames," if you will. Or even "broads," perhaps. The dresses were a highlight of the show, particularly the nipped-waist pencil dresses with small Atari character prints; other strong looks included the slouchy pinstripe and micro-check suits and a pleated skirtsuit of patchworked Black Watch plaid. Sternberg also deserves special credit for his capes—that's a conceptually tricky garment (what do you do with your arms? And your hands?), but his versions were convincing. Eventually, the rather remarkable-looking knit turban caps on all the models started to look convincing, too. You could envision the broad wearing one turning to some smirking guy on the subway, and saying, "Wipe that look off your face, Joe, or I'll knock you right in the kisser." Game over.