“Women don’t just want to be dressed, they want to be double-dressed.”
Coming off six trunk shows, where revenge spending was in full force particularly among the crypto-wealthy, Adam Lippes is heralding the return of bold fashion, American-style.
For resort, he made a compelling case for making an effort with strong shapes and the finest fabrics, whether it’s for a rescheduled event, for everyday — or for both, pairing a gold fringe party-of-a-dress with a camel double-faced cashmere hooded coat, as is the New York sportswear way.
Speaking of sexy in the city, he has been noticing the “look-at-me” mood among women emerging from their quarantine cocoons. “I call it the naked parade,” he deadpanned. Of course, that’s not him. So instead, he acknowledged the ’90s throwback lingerie craze with a bold silhouette — a sculpted cami babydoll top over a matching selvedge denim flared leg pant. Jeans but make them chic-as-hell.
As a matter of fact, pants, and not of the stretchy lounge variety, are back in a big way, he reported, noting they are his bestselling category at the moment. Another post-pandemic wardrobe pick-me-up? Lippes’ powder pink cords with gorgeous drape (a statement but still soft), worn with one of his crisp bow blouses, which are a new American classic. Finished with a black double-face cashmere jacket, the result was polished but still casual.
Pushing further into the preppy canon, an oversize navy fisherman’s knit sweater vest looked fresh over a plaid cotton poplin shirtdress, and a khaki-and-white floral ikat print camp shirt over navy-and-white floral Bermuda shorts was a sophisticated take on the matching resort set.
Lippes has dressed Jill Biden four times, and a double-faced silk crepe V-neck dress in lovely lavender had first lady written all over it. Looking ahead to party season, gala offerings were all about ease, including an airy pink taffeta gown with that sculpted cami neckline, and a black Chantilly lace cross front dress finished off with with one of his flower belts.
The designer has been expanding his jewelry offerings during the pandemic, and the flower belts he can’t keep in stock. “The jewelry business has been outstanding,” he said, noting one of his new designs, a gold locket with two lucky dice inside.
Lippes is feeling good about the prospects for American design coming out of the pandemic, as the fashion focus shifts to New York this September with more in-person shows (he’s still deciding if he will have one of them), and the Costume Institute’s celebration.
“I’m hoping it will encourage more designers to look at New York, instead of showing somewhere else. There is so much inspiration here, from the old guard Geoffrey Beene, Oscar de la Renta and Bill Blass, to the coolest guys Marc Jacobs and Helmut Lang, it all was here,” Lippes said. “I’m hoping that the spotlight helps the talent see that.”