Naeem Khan’s pre-fall collection was all about summer ease: think lightweight and casual silhouettes perfect for an outdoor wedding. It’s a given that the collection was also underscored by the designer’s signature brand of glamour, yet with a softer approach than in seasons past.
The big novelty here was his use of stretch sequins — bright and playful solid colors cut into easy shapes like a little cardigan jacket, sleeveless tops and slouchy elastic waist pants. The colors ranged from bold to unexpected, including blue, silver, orange and lime green. Khan has used the fabric in recent collections to craft slinky Halston-esque gowns; those have sold so well that it was natural to offer up lounge-y separates in the same fabric that worked for multiple occasions. The shimmer errs on the side of evening, but the ease of familiar separates silhouettes that also work for a dressy office outfit when styled with jeans or a simple T-shirt.
There was a focus on drawing in new, younger customers who wouldn’t otherwise be able to afford a traditional Naeem gown. The sequin stretch items are priced competitively, as are fringe beaded tops, best-selling poncho shawls with floral embroidery and airy organza blouses.
There were, naturally, the beautifully beaded and embroidered gowns and statement pieces for which Khan is known. Standouts here included a weightless bronze and turquoise gown and the mismatched animal prints, including a ladylike dress coat cut in a Fifties style. No other item represented the collection better than an intricately beaded transparent cardigan coat, which combined Khan’s eye for detail with everyday appeal.