Equipment is pressing reset. Owner The Collected Group (formerly Dutch LLC) brought Sarah Rutson on board as chief brand officer for the California-based firm a year ago, and has also recruited Tim Bailey, formerly of Juicy Couture, as the 42-year-old label’s vice president of design.
Rutson has high hopes for Equipment, which was presenting its first full collection since the change of direction, built around understated, well-crafted wardrobe staples with a contemporary positioning. She is hoping to move way beyond the shirt category for which the label is most famous.
The lineup included lots of feminine yet simple day dresses in a largely neutral color palette, either plain or printed with a whimsical dandelion clock motif, for example, as well as plenty of soft tailoring. Highlights included a butter-soft leather cowboy shirt in a caramel shade, which was styled under a cute black cotton dress with a sweetheart neckline. A khaki silk military-inspired shirtdress and wide pants in a big check pattern in black and white also caught the eye.
But the collection was not about statement pieces, quite the opposite. “It’s the backbone of your wardrobe,” Rutson explained. “At the moment in fashion, everything feels loud, and the palate needs to be cleansed.”