Newly appointed global design director Niall Sloan started in August, though his first imprint on the label won’t be until the fall 2018 collection. In the interim, a design team worked on both mainline and Sport with the goal of taking classic Escada prints and reinterpreting them in new silhouettes. The effect was a less structured, more lightweight offering for the boardroom to dinner. Florals atop florals were an easy path to more youthful dressing, and could pack easily into itself, like a wrinkle-free coatdress that folded into an envelope pouch.
The inspiration was twofold — Peter Lindbergh’s recent photo exhibition in Germany and iznik pottery from Turkey — resulting in a mix of classic men’s wear-inspired suiting with bold prints in red, blue and turquoise. The items that toed the balance best were subtle, as in cardigans and sweatshirts with hand-beaded petals that never felt overdone. There were in fact quite a few embellished looks, from a flirty blue dress that would suit any young starlet to an evening gown that took over 300 hours to hand-bead; though a great deal of work was applied to these, they maintained an unstructured ease. Perhaps that’s the reason customers keep coming back — basics like polos with color accents and balloon-sleeve sweaters are made to be casual, sweet and business appropriate.
The Sport range skewed more street, if there ever was such use of the word in Escada’s vocabulary. There was novelty shirting with a smooth hand touch, plays on logomania, tracksuit items and bold orange hoodies to break up angular suits.