How good it feels to turn the big 4-0 — just take it from Elie Tahari. On Tuesday evening, he celebrated four decades in business with a presentation at his Fifth Avenue store that had live models in the windows, a cool lineup of clothes along the walls and well-wishers greeting him at every turn.
The mood was jovial, and so was the designer for reasons beyond the milestone. For spring, he delivered a strong collection, a study in modernism with ample commercial appeal. Oscar Niemeyer’s Fifties Brasilia architecture provided the main inspiration, which Tahari translated with many white-on-white and black looks, among them a sporty organza coat shown with a sweater and lace shorts. Dressy tracksuits in a cool snakeskin print were at once urban and sweet. Silicone details on necklines and pockets added a futuristic touch.
Throughout, Tahari peppered the clothes with nods to his impressive career, most notably in looks from the “Edition 1974” anniversary capsule collection, which ranged from an updated jumpsuit to an eyelet trenchcoat.
Tahari described his men’s wear as having a “casual ease,” pointing to a washed cotton utility parka paired with a tonal chino and matching scarf. Some technical details appeared via the silicone-taped seams of bomber jackets and blazers with raw edges, adding a contrast to the relaxed aesthetic.