For the first time in 12 years of business, Jason Wu did something he has never done — he took a summer vacation. Greece, Italy and Spain were some of his stops before he returned to New York feeling freshly centered. But it was another sun-drenched locale, the French Riviera, that inspired his spring 2020 Jason Wu Collection; even if he’d been developing it before his trip, there was definitely some post-vacation glow apparent in his latest lineup for his advanced contemporary range, Jason Wu. 

The Riviera as muse gave the designer a chance to lean in to brighter hues. A sky blue trenchcoat and a citrus yellow tank dress made strong cases for head-to-toe color. A red Breton-style striped blouse paired with a white abstract floral-print skirt had an airy lightness as well as the touch of the femininity he is known for. Dress shapes from the Thirties and Forties and loose suiting, house staples all — they are here, too.

A stand-out look was a yellow and ocean blue floral-print long jacket and pant set; the sunny petals had a warped effect that to the eye seemed to drip off the garment. It’s a technique not engineered by computer, rather Wu used a printed thread that created the design as they were sewn together. It’s a couture-like detail you’d absolutely find at his Collection level, maybe in some frothy gown, but here they took a sportier direction. The conversation between what he designs at his collection level and at advanced contemporary runs through his work, and makes a lot of sense as many of his retail accounts carry both lines.

“Really to me, a seasonal message should be consistent across both collections,” he noted, and it’s a smart way to get his customer to buy, and ultimately covet, all the parts of the Jason Wu world.

“The Collection still drives the business, but this contemporary collection definitely is growing fast,” Wu said. At a time when some of his contemporaries are tightening the ship and shuttering their collection businesses to focus on the contemporary space, Jason Wu is steadfast in both his brands’ journeys.


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