When this writer moved to New York there was a buzz going on South-of-Houston on Mercer Street; back when Soho's Apple store was but a dream, J. Crew peddled substantially less-thrilling basics, and Felicity was fictitiously shilling pre-soy-advent lattes at the Broadway Dean and Deluca, the Tocca store--bolstered by its proximity to the newly opened Marc Jacobs boutique--was hoppin'. The "It-girls-of the-moment" (like Helena Christianson and James King) were frockin' out in those Caribbean-inspired dresses the label had built a business upon. Add to this a well-timed brand extension into fragrance--which struck a chord with women rebelling against the high-art, power-imagery of scents like Calvin Klein's Obsession--and Tocca's cool factor was firmly cemented.
Tocca was officially the go-to for a wistful-little-slippy-thing of a dress that Carrie could wear just as easily while in the Hamptons at one of those over-the-top parties Samantha tended to throw, as she could with a little cardigan and some Sigerson Morrison kitten-heeled flip-flops while running errands in the newly minted "Nolita."
Many moons later, the brand's anti-glitz, alta-ease point-of-view is enchanting women once more (this time under the creative direction of Emma Fletcher who's been at the helm since 2011). When we headed west to Pier 59 for Thursday's presentation, it was alongside a gaggle of Tocca fans, looking as always for those signature dresses; this time around, they were just as likely to pair them with Isabel Marant booties as they were with the aforementioned flip-flops-cum-heels.
The slipdress took center stage within the presentation's assortment, being realized in both simple and ruffle detailed versions with a '70s-disco vibe. This '90s staple is all over the the runways this season, and it was mighty wise of the Tocca team to seize such a brand-right moment.
They were shy about venturing into less familiar territory in the way of high-waisted, carrot-legged slacks and a earthy palette spiked with a smoldering cinnabar red.
The easy blouses paired with fluid skirts looked office-appropriate--and yet, when broken up into separates, could also be live-in weekend staples. This wearability was the collection's triumphant strength. We are looking forward to future seasons in which Fletcher continues to grow its sizzle.