Stacey Bendet loves a Seventies reference. A quick cross-check of any of her recent collections will furnish the era’s signatures, from flared trousers and bohemian dresses to funky prints and embroideries. “When I started Alice + Olivia, all of my inspiration photos were of my mom in these amazing bell-bottom pants,” she said. “I wanted to go back to that era…of rock ‘n’ roll, of empowered women.” Her fall collection, done in rich, autumnal hues, served as a late-Seventies-in-New-York flashback.
Bendet offered new takes on power suiting, done in embroidered tweeds and rich metallic brocades styled with Lurex knits and pussy-bow blouses. She took a maximalist approach to embellishment, rendering her evening gowns in floral-embroidered sequins. A denim jacket covered in pins or a pleated leather and lace skirt gave the lineup its eclectic spirit.
The presentation — prime for Instagram photo ops — followed a day in the life of an artistic girl through a series of elaborate mise-en-scènes: from her art studio to the subway to a record store to a dive bar. In one scene, a model painted a canvas while a nearly nude muscular male stood nearby as her muse. “If that’s not a girl power moment, I don’t know what is,” Bendet said.