We’re about mid-way through New York Fashion Week, and there’s a clear theme in place for Spring 2014: out with the body-conscious and in with the diaphanous, free, and loose. Donna Karan cemented the laidback vibe at her show, which was founded on flowing silhouettes of sheer fabric for her earthy-meets-polished babe. But while plenty of designers are presenting us with exuberant fabric use that deliver the message that it’s all about excess, Donna refuses to overdo it. Instead of going full-force, she keeps the exaggerated kimono-esque sleeve relegated to just one side of the body, and punctuated the city-hippie dresses with low-slung leather belts and whip-stitched and tough embroidered accents for a rough-and-tumble vibe.
Restraint also comes through in her color choices. She painted a dim palette for Spring; the the jet-black lack prints are on the heavy side and the blue-denim accents don’t match the airy feel of the lightweight fabrications. The floppy hats are hit and miss; the one worn by Karlie Kloss is something Tina and I immediately said we had to have, but those scrunched leather variations were instantly compared to Harry Potter’s sorting hat by more than one editor at the show. The takeaway? In case you didn’t already know, Donna doesn’t do fitted, at least not this time around. Even the coats are loose and languid. It’s just a shame the mood wasn’t a bit a more relaxed.