“Passport to Wonderland. Women of the world. Have you seen my boat?!” Stacey Bendet exclaimed while introducing her spring collection, filled with the sort of eclectic, feminine and wildly entertaining tenets that have come to define Alice + Olivia.
Her presentations are often elaborate stagings that transport guests to places both whimsical and far-flung, and she didn’t disappoint: I mean, there was even a yacht! Decked out with A+O flair, it was available for docked overnight stays at Chelsea Piers through the end of fashion week.
In tandem with Booking.com, she imagined vignettes based on her favorite destinations around the world — including Paris; Provence; Positano, Italy; Marrakech; Careyes, Mexico; Tokyo, and Wonderland — filled with patterns and prints to represent each destination.
There were a lot of highlights to her maximalist inclinations: a dreamy neon yellow tulle gown and softly tailored black-and-white graphic set in Wonderland; ornate and textured print-on-print dresses in Marrakech; a playfully pieced-together dress in Careyes, and a beautiful scarf print found on a layered skirt with handkerchief hem in Paris.
Bendet’s brand has always underscored the importance of female empowerment, inclusivity and an openness to engage other cultures. She’s planning on launching a “women of the world” series next spring where she’ll bring together women from all over into a conversation, with the idea that fashion unites. “I keep saying the world has become so divisive,” she said. “We need to do things that make the world feel more connected.”