“It’s a good moment,” expressed Lafayette 148 creative director Emily Smith. She was referring to the brand’s new Upper East Side store, which opened only four days before (with a noted steady, heavy traffic flow to boot). But she could also have been referring to the brand’s latest collection. Over the seasons, Smith has been bringing modernity and a fresh eye to Lafayette 148 while upholding its level of luxury — and spring was no different.
When designing the latest collection, Smith and her team looked to images of Sixties socialites Lee Radziwill, Babe Paley and Gloria Guinness to inject a more feminine feel to the lineup.
“We loved this effortless American style that they had, so we deconstructed a lot of their silhouettes down to a basic shirt or basic pair of pants. Reinventing the old so it felt fresh and new,” explained Smith. “The whole concept focused on their vacation homes, or in some of their cases, multiple vacation homes and private planes, and just dressing to that lifestyle.”
One could easily see these interpretations through Smith’s modern head-to-toe cotton topcoats over day dresses and jumpsuits, belted at the waist, or in a rich cable-knit sweater paired with mid-length tonal skirt. Retro details such as little square necklines or voluminous sleeves also ran throughout delicately on shirting and pant silhouettes.
Last season’s sharp power suiting and tailored jackets came softer, as in a hemp blazer, a great three-piece suit with tortoise buttons or easy overcoat with ruffled sleeves, all in tones of cream. While most of the collection came in whites and tans, there were hints of glowy light blue, yellow and even a few sequins that gave a light and fresh appeal overall. Buttery leather shorts and skirts, paired with chunky knit tops or leisurely blazers, made for strong additions. Overall, the collection held a feminine allure that melded ease and luxury.
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