There's always a trap for designers that cleave too closely to a given theme or period. They either launch into a world of Waterloos or become trapped in the literal which ends in a Waterloo moment. It's frustrating to watch when they have obvious talent and skill and even more maddening because to do less can say infinitely more. That's what I came away with after looking at this collection. More often than not, program notes can be a case of TMI.
Brian's inspirationfor this collection was a young immigrant gamine taking in the New World of Ellis Island. She's still enamored with the way she used to dress but conflicted with the way she must assimilate in her new home. This is a serenade to nostalgia with an upbeat twist. Sort of a folk dance from the old country overlaid on a jazzy new sound. The styling along with several looks seemed to illustrate perfectly this dichotomy. Opaque black hose and laced up, high heeled Granny brogues, always age most any look I can think of. This combination with looks that were great feats of tailoring or paired with fussy sheaths made for a dreary collection.Long, sad colored skirts with fur jackets don't evoke Resort, no matter the climate or locale.
When he loosened up with a very smart black pant suit with cleverly cut sleeves on the jacket or a dress cut in silk with an oil spill print, things looked up. The most appealing exits in the collection was a great little black dress with horizontal, textured stripes and knife pleated skirt looked young, modern and just right. The same could be said for a black strapless gown that was broken in two with a clean, fitted corset and long tailored skirt. That one piece was the most successful marriage of the old world and the new.
He's clearly a talented young designer and one that is fast developing his skills. I look forward to the day that he takes his own lead and not and old one to tell us his own story.