Richard Chai Love
September 08, 2007 New York
Lean but fluid floor-length skirts and dresses came with sporty pairingsa soft leather bomber, a long cotton-silk anorak. Those may be familiar staples, but Chai has a knack for adding subtle refinements, like the gentle pleats on a neckline or the elegantly slender racerback on everything from skinny knits to a daywear shift dress. Though suit jackets, also with lengthened proportions, were abundant, it was the array of white shirts in shadow-striped cotton (and one in a terrific bleached print) that stood out among the more tailored looks.
Chai carried his menswear notions into evening with a silk crepe waistcoat and pants followed by a trompe l'oeil waistcoat gown. But the more he gets to know his customer, the more he realizes she's a sucker for his dresses, too. He offered her a lot to love in crepe shirtdresses and charmeuse shifts. This designer is growing up quite nicely.