September 05, 2007
A boy-next-door type who designed for Anne Klein for a few years, Nolan was moved this season by the sunny travel illustrations first published by Miroslav Sasek in the sixties (This Is Paris, This Is Edinburgh, This Is
). He is also an ardent admirer of Claire McCardell, the godmother of clean-cut American sportswear. The collection, accordingly, had an innocent, Kennedy-era Camelot mood. It featured many sweet dresses and smart Jackie O. coats and ended with a very traditional bride.
There were some kitschy elements, like the plastic-gumball necklaces. And it was all a bit rah-rah at times: Many of the models were wholesome civilians (dancers from the American Ballet Theater, the designer┐s nieces, a human-rights lawyer); the emblem of a favorite charity was emblazoned on shorts and T-shirts; and every outfit was accessorized with a book. But it was also heartfelt, fun, and American as apple pie.