“Welcome to lavender world,” Christian Siriano declared upon entering his atelier. The designer took the color to the extreme for pre-fall, injecting soft shades of lavender and lilac into his signature sculptural gowns and a wide range of sleek, daytime silhouettes.
Siriano has been laser-focused with his pre-collections lately — remember, resort was a punch of Barbie pink. Because pre-season collections sit on sales floors the longest, it’s an effort to keep the seasonal messages consistent across different store buys. He recruited Westworld actress Angela Sarafyan for the look book – marking the first time he’s shot on a celebrity – in a further effort to appeal to a wider audience.
The first piece he created was the most elaborate. It also clearly displayed the collection’s inspiration: the lavender fields in Provence, France. Dramatic, tiered layers mirrored the rows of flowers without being overbearing, and the gown would be a great Oscar-night contender, perhaps for Lady Gaga. Other dresses balancing his penchant for drama against feminine charm included a mini lilac number with voluminous sleeves, a pouffy little black dress with cold-shoulder draping, and an elegant white gown with a built-in capelet. Draping, wrap and ruffle details are modern ways Siriano has used to address conservative clients who ask for more coverage.
The collection ranged from feminine and formal to cool and everyday. Separates were meant to be mixed and matched and dressed up or down, like revamped blazers with wrap-front closure, crystal-beaded tops with long sashes, and cropped turtleneck tops that were at once playful and edgy. Cheeky patent leather was cut into a cropped jacket with exaggerated collars, a skirt and thigh-high boots. “Let’s have fun, get crazy,” Siriano said of the collection. “We just kind of went for it.”