Yiqing Yin is moving Leonard ever further away from its roots as a purveyor of ladylike silk prints with a strong Asian influence.
For her spring collection for the French label, she created patterns in a kaleidoscope of primary colors that were inspired by Pop Art and graffiti. They included a multicolored ballpoint pen scrawl, hand-painted checks and collages incorporating newspaper print and cartoons. A cocktail dress with a fan-pleated bustier top, for example, looked as if it had been made from the torn pages of a magazine. Like most of the outfits, it was worn with sneakers to convey a nonchalant attitude.
“It’s like color therapy — colors that generate a strong emotion with a lot of innocence and purity,” said Yin, dressed in black from head to toe. “It’s a shriek of delight to get out of winter and monotony.”
Yin’s deft hand with pleating was still apparent in this collection, in particular on a red eelskin bustier dress, yet the lineup lacked the sophisticated textural interplays that have become a hallmark of her tenure. If one thing has been made clear in recent years, it’s that Leonard cannot live on prints alone.