September 07, 2005
Twenty-four-year-old Ashleigh Verrier said her New York fashion week debut was inspired by the early days of American sportswear, but there was nothing off-the-rack or immature about the line she showed Thursday afternoon. Her polished 12-look presentation ran the gamut from a silk racer-back tank and baggy tweed shorts to a navy cocktail dress trimmed in silver sequins, and each piece was finished with great care. The neckline of a simple jersey tee was piped in a contrasting color. Top-stitching added interest to a pencil skirt and trench cut from raw burlap. And a black lace overlay will make an otherwise straightforward navy-and-white shirt stand out and be noticed among the multitudes at Saks Fifth Avenue. The department store bought her Parsons thesis collection last year and has since been a loyal customer. An internship at Proenza Schouler's studio left obvious marks on this young designer; one collarless coat owed a debt to the duo. Otherwise, the mix-and-match, masculine-feminine sensibility Verrier is cultivating appears to be hers, and hers alone.