If Milanese fashion seems divorced from reality, then consider Raf Simons a dedicated marital counselor doing his damnedest to reunite clothes with their purpose. His down-to-business attitude, clean-cut clothes and clear ideas made Simons’ Thursday evening show a real palette cleanser. He lightened the heaviness of his premier effort of last season and got down to the essence of what the house’s loyal customer craves: wearability with an austere, artsy edge. And what a fine reality check it was.
Simons laid out a veritable buffet of tailoring that will appeal to working women of several age brackets and sensibilities. His spare jackets came short and boxy or long and lean over skinny pants; crisp shirts were tucked into sculpted miniskirts. His other big theme was color — royal blue, kelly green, marigold yellow — bold strokes that were missing from fall. While some of the bright-with-black pairings faltered, his approach was gutsy and refreshing.
But beyond smart tailoring and real-world savvy, he also demonstrated a surprising fanciful side. Tempering all that minimalist restraint, out came a dress shimmering with pink iridescent sequins and sculpted with a giant bow across its back. It was a dazzler in every way.