It has been quite a week for Ralph Lauren. He flexed the muscles of Polo Power — creative, commercial, tech, philanthropic (girls don’t walk on NYC water for free) — when he opened the brand’s 38,000-square-foot Fifth Avenue flagship and showed that collection in a holographic video extravaganza featuring cutting-edge water-projection technology.
The dizzying activity focused on the young, cool, fast side of the Ralph Lauren world. On Thursday morning, Lauren showed another side of that world, the one all about tony refinement. Yet its denizens, too, are on the move for spring, embracing a practical approach to dressing for day and evening.
That’s practical as in utilitarian practical; Lauren’s starting point was workwear and uniforms. He opened with cargo pants paired with a purple silk top draped across one shoulder with a sari-esque look. But rather than work a fusion of utility with exotica, Lauren focused on the former, exploring its possibilities as a viable proposal for day through evening. Along the way, he jazzed it up with a palette that played to the genre’s natural recessive tones — olive, sage, tan — against flamboyant brights with a zesty, retro feel. A bright yellow leather trench topped a sage green sweater and suede cargo pants; tan suede stretch pants got a triple shot of bright orange juice — gazar safari jacket, alligator tote and nappa sandal. A break from the color came in waist-centric monochromatic suits and safari shirtdresses.
The motif moved into evening with safari gone glam: a sage gazaar shirt tucked into a yellow tulle skirt and a billowing taffeta gown, each with a certain sporty bravado.
Lauren brightened it all with liberal use of big, flashy, multibright crystals in drop earrings and bib necklaces, both real and embroidered onto tops and sweaters. Because even the most work-oriented girl likes to sparkle.