Julie de Libran’s pre-fall collection for Sonia Rykiel ticked a number of boxes.
The designer mixed floaty striped dresses in summery cotton and crepe with transitional pieces like a navy cotton velvet cape or a caramel shearling long vest, with the aim of catering to the customer buying the collection to wear in summer as well as those stocking their wardrobes for fall.
The house revealed in October that it was shuttering its Sonia by Sonia Rykiel secondary line and laying off a quarter of its staff as it moves to reposition its main Sonia Rykiel collection. Accordingly, de Libran introduced more accessible pieces, like an asymmetrically buttoned and collared black faux leather dress.
With its muted colors and streamlined shapes, there was a slightly elegiac tone to the collection, reflecting the pall that has fallen over the house since the death of its founder last August.
But Rykiel’s tongue-in-cheek spirit shined through in Eighties yuppie references like a velvet skirt suit or the crisp Victorian shirts with broderie anglaise collars that underpinned many looks.
“I think it gives a certain allure to frame the face and cover up the top, and then show a little skin in other places,” de Libran said. Madame Rykiel couldn’t have put it better.