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Cacharel Unveils New CEO, in Major Corporate Revamp November 21st, 2012 @ 00:56 AM


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Ghesquière Departs Balenciaga in Major Surprise November 05th, 2012 @ 00:43 AM


Sao Paulo Fashion Week: Between Optimism and Fear November 02nd, 2012 @ 00:28 AM


London Unveils Men’s Season Schedule November 01st, 2012 @ 00:36 AM


Azzaro Releases Castello Branco October 25th, 2012 @ 00:18 AM


Revenue Soars 22 Percent at LVMH in First Three Quarters October 16th, 2012 @ 00:18 AM


Rykiel Names Geraldo da Conceicao Artistic Director September 21st, 2012 @ 8:12 PM


Brazil’s New London Pop-Up September 21st, 2012 @ 7:20 PM


McQueen Men Returning Home to London September 12th, 2012 @ 7:19 PM


Roitfeld, Mum and Son, Open in Brazil September 07th, 2012 @ 00:54 AM


Berluti Opens to Big-Time Business in London September 06th, 2012 @ 3:27 PM


Stefano Pilati Back with a Bang at Zegna September 05th, 2012 @ 7:10 PM


Hugo Boss Wows in Berlin, Plans for New York July 06th, 2012 @ 00:17 AM


Salvatore Ferragamo: Crusin’ the Louvre June 13th, 2012 @ 11:04 AM


Michel Klein Gains New Backer; Launches Sunglass Collection June 13th, 2012 @ 00:48 AM


Sykes Jettisoned by Aquascutum; Maurer In at Rabanne June 06th, 2012 @ 00:18 AM


Armani Conquers China, Chastises the Pope June 01st, 2012 @ 11:53 AM



 

Karen Walker Makes New York Debut But Retains Her Signature Cool

Lauren David Peden
September 10th, 2006 @ 10:06 AM - New York

New Zealand-based designer Karen Walker may have jumped the pond this season - for the past four years she’s shown as part of London Fashion Week, and her show at the Altman Building on Saturday, September 9th marked her New York runway debut - but her effortlessly cool, street- and menswear influenced style lost nothing in translation.

"Her clothes are the best-selling items in my store," said Elizabeth Charles, owner of the eponymous New York boutique specializing in Australian and New Zealand designers, from her perch in the front row. One look at this collection and it was clear Charles was likely to have another sell-out season to look forward to.

As is her wont, Walker, who dubbed her Spring/Summer 2007 collection "Victory Garden," paired slouchy suits and oversized, borrowed-from-the-boys vests with shorts (this season, they’re blousy at the thigh with a band of smocking at the knee), and she repeated the billowy, bloused cocoon shape on skirts, dresses, tops and even the sleeves of chiffon blouses. Sometimes the garment was larger on top and nipped in at the bottom, as with long floral bloomers, other times, as with paperbag-waist pants and shorts, the silhouette was reversed.

Walker cited Charlie Chaplin as a muse for her previous "Dough and Dynamite" collection, and the Little Tramp made an appearance this season, too, in the form of roomy twill trousers and an equally generous waistcoat, worn over the whimsically named Salad Face t-shirt, which bore veggie appliqués - tomato "eyes," carrot "nose," etc., yet managed to be more cool than cutesy.

Ditto the ‘80s-tinged neon pink and green belts and handbags shown with some looks and the sweet, masterfully mixed prints, including one exceptionally lovely tiny-bright-floral-on-black pattern that referenced the ‘40s without feeling the least bit dated.  Our hands-down favorite item was a Day-Glo watermelon nylon parka that would brighten any rainy spring day.

"It’s about ‘40s British land girls who had to wear men’s trousers and vests but made it their own with little cute blouses underneath," said Walker post-show.  "I’ve always liked that contrast of the masculine and feminine, but I also like that notion of making do with available materials. And at that time, there were limited supplies but they made it their own."

Well, we know more than a few women who will certainly want to make Walker’s beautifully tailored, unselfconsciously hip designs their own come spring.

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