Mexican designer Paola Hernandez is new to the US market—and still seeking out the right retailers—but I'll say that this collection should help greatly on that front. And what a lovely little presentation she pulled together at The Inn at Irving Place. Any time I'm on Irving Place, I feel calmer. It's one of those nooks of NYC that are just so peaceful. The models, both boys and girls, were set up around the room in different settings: playing chess, Scrabble, and backgammon, or reading books and drinking tea. And it wasn't fake. Paola even asked everyone at the casting who knew/liked playing all the games and they brought their own books. And the clothes themselves speak to a downtown intellectual crew. They're sharp and crisp (with a few slouchy tees thrown in for good measure) in mostly black and white. Smart, simple, and easy to wear. So retail, let's get on this one, pronto. I pretty much wanted every piece. Now who's up for a game of Scrabble?
Paola Hernandez's Dress Your Self
Those familiar with Paola Hernandez know better than to cast off any of her collections as "just clothes"-- well-thought-out, highly intellectual concepts are the trademark of the Mexico native. Her Spring 2011 line, entitled "Dress Your Self," was of course no exception. Paola followed up her last collection with what she described as a series of basics that "draw attention to the subject wearing them." When she and I had last met, she had described her urge to create a collection that, when worn, would set the wearer apart from the crowd even when the viewer was walking behind them on a crowded street. And, to be sure, some of the items she showed on Tuesday night did include subtle but intriguing detailing on the reverse side. While black was overwhelmingly dominant, I'm certainly not complaining--the entire collection was chic and wearable, and I'm not embarrassed to say that I'm now pining for more than one of Paola's adorable outfits (can we talk about that cape?!).