For the second year in a row, Christelle Kocher staged a pre-fall show for her label Koché in New York. Last time the French designer chose The Strand for her venue, this time Planet Hollywood, where the show took place in the restaurant on the second floor, with regular patrons seated around the runway. Kocher decided on Planet Hollywood because of her fascination with American pop culture, Hollywood and presumably for its kitschy, kooky interiors, which jibed with the collection’s sensibility. Since she’s not a local, she’s forgiven for picking a spot smack in the middle of Times Square, i.e., the eighth circle of hell.
Kocher showed men’s and women’s clothes that demonstrated the play between sport and couture elements, such as dresses made from polo shirts and soccer jerseys and feather trims, that are the basis for the label. “I wanted to add a dialogue with popular culture in America, while working on all my codes,” Kocher said after the show, noting that an uptick in “femininity and more happy colors” were the goal. The latter was front and center with an emphasis on hot pink and teal worked on glam feathered coats, suits, smocked dresses and wide-leg tailored trousers. Men wore looks in the same vein as the women, a bit more street and feminized. The juxtaposition of sophisticated decorative elements and sporty street ultimately came off as clothes high on quirky, personal charm. They gave a warm, joyful feeling that promptly evaporated once you exited the building and were face to face with Times Square.