When we asked Wayne Lee backstage about the inspiration for her dark, ophidian-themed Fall 2012 collection we certainly weren’t expecting the answer to be motherhood. “I just had a baby and the whole idea of snakeskin for me personally is that I feel I’m stepping into a new skin and a new chapter in my life.” Lee said. “Last season was ‘up in the air,’” she adds, referring to the desert birds of prey who were the jumping off point for spring’s flowing layers. “Now we’re on the ground, slithering!”
Ever one for androgynous beauty, Lee was careful to stay away from any of snakeskin’s more sexed-up connotations. “Snakeskin is a very feminine kind of concept,” she says. “I wanted to do something to also bring the masculine part of the Wayne equation in.” To wit, nary a miniskirt hit the runway. Instead, Lee brought in sporty—and highly original—touches, like a raglan top with snakeskin sleeves or a cobra button-down tank layered under leather.
For those not yet convinced of the snake's charms, Lee also offered less literal takes on reptilian dressing: namely, an abstract cobra pattern that wound its way through the collection. The digital print showed up in white on a side button dress and flowy pants and in an X-ray version on a bias cut silk skirt. With the models all looking perfectly at ease in their boy-girl outfits and Converse sneakers, we have a feeling the Wayne clan is going to be coiled tightly come fall.