I said this to Steff as we left the Chris Benz studio after his Resort 2011 preview: The reason I like Chris' clothes so much is because they look like him. There's no borrowing from others, something many designers rely on a bit too heavily these days. What's more, "his sense of color is incredible," Steff went on to say.
And we're not just waxing on because Chris is part of the Fashionista family. This collection is seriously, seriously good.
The preview took place in Chris' eBay-furnished studio, which made it even better. (We especially love the racks of old fabric flower molds in the conference room, which Chris' business partner Ashley scooped up after one of the garment district flower companies closed. It could be likened to an apothecary for fashion people.)
There was a gorgeous star printed dress, some pale seafoam green high-waisted pleated chinos, and plenty of cute shifts. The skirt of a long cream dress was made from pieces of delicate tulle, which was made to look like tweed from afar. Steff loved the knit cardigans with a keyhole in the back that was closed with a Swarovski crystal. An interiors fanatic, Chris often likes to start a collection by thinking about the woman who would live in a favorite designer's world. This time around, he started with the work of mid century sculptor Sascha Brastoff, whose decorative ceramics were used this morning to house snacks and refreshments.
We also really loved the shoes, which were Brian Atwood with, of course, a touch of Chris Benz. He added the rope. Brilliant.