February 12, 2014 New York
The company's menswear provided an obvious way in for Wu. "The first order of business was to get into the DNA of the brand," he said afterward. "At their technical facilities, they have every kind of machine, including a shirt-folding machine. That precision, that rigor needed to be expressed, but in a feminine way. It needs to be authentic." Without a doubt these were precisely tailored clothes, and quite minimal too. The palette was strictly neutral: all black, charcoal, camel, and ivory. Hidden snaps or D rings replaced buttons in most cases. What embroideries there were were rendered in a Bauhaus-inspired grid. Rigorous, indeed. Leather belts accentuated waistlines, but the silhouette was long and lean, hardly voluptuous. The clothes will appeal to a no-frills kind of woman who likes the idea of having a uniform. The statuesque Stella Tennant comes to mind; she closed the show in a pretty faultless black pantsuit with satin revers. Other types will likely find it a bit dry. Wu's challenge going forward will be to maintain the Boss polish while figuring out ways to loosen up and have a bit more fun.