September 09, 2006
Given the wackiness that used to distinguish their presentations, it seemed unlikely that Steven Cox and Daniel Silver would turn their label Duckie Brown into such an assured poke in the eye of mainstream American menswear. And yet that's where they've been heading. For spring, they even pitched their tent in the backyard of a sportswear deity: circa-seventies Calvin Klein (at least that's who Silver claimed as inspiration for the collection's sweatshirts). But it was Rei Kawakubo who sprang to mind when a jacket or sweats came down the catwalk peppered with holes like a postmodern lace. The play on proportions also had a Japanese flavor. Mind you, the dropped crotch has always been a Duckie signature, but here it exploded in all directions, into drawstring pants so voluminous the young mannequin had trouble walking. From the first outfit (a lo-o-ong white shirt over wide trousers under a short, tailored jacket), oversize was key to the collection. "Comfort and drape" were the goals, said Silver. The comfort factor was obvious in something as simple as a black polo with baggy black pants, the drape equally so in a "waistcoat" that wasn't much more than a huge swatch of fabric. In the case of those sweatshirt salutes to Calvin, necklines were scooped front and back, the scoop in some cases echoed by tone-on-tone beading, another Duckie signature. The droll Duckie of old resurfaced in the "Memories of NY" print on a shorts suit. It was made up of vignettes of Cox and Silver's life, sketched by an intern (who gets a percentage of sales) in their studio.