Tina Lutz has proven herself to be a natural fit for TSE since assuming the creative director role there about a year ago. In that time, she has elevated the knitwear brand's profile by introducing ethical initiatives, such as using certified organic cashmere and working with artisan collectives. For Fall ’14, Lutz was inspired by birds—specifically, those that had died while flying into windows and were captured by German photographer Edgar Leciejewski in his book Himmel Ohne Wolken (published by the designer's sister). Sounds morbid, but Lutz interpreted the theme lightly, showing versatile knit scarves—styled around the neck or waist—embroidered with fringed tassels that gave the appearance of feathers, as well as delicate knits and cocoon-shaped toppers boasting subtle "avian" stitching details.

This season, Lutz collaborated with four graduating seniors from RISD (where she teaches an apparel design course as an adjunct professor). Each was responsible for different aspects of the collection. Anne Wang, for example, developed the feathered print found on a silk shift dress and the overlay of a cashmere cardigan. Meanwhile, Austin Snyder fashioned two sweaters featuring manipulated, convertible sleeves; Genah Young Kim used upcycled yarn to hand-braid an armor-like gilet that added sculptural volume to several looks; and Caitrin Watson created a baroque intarsia motif. "I felt a sense of personal responsibility and altruism. This was my way of giving back," said Lutz of working with her students, whose pieces were some of the more directional ones in the lineup. Lutz rounded them out with refined sweatpants, ultrasoft pencil skirts, and sixteen-ply cashmere duster coats that epitomized the idea of "wearable luxury."