Romance is usually at the forefront of Wes Gordon's mind. But this season, the designer wanted to expand his world. “I really pushed myself,” he enthused backstage after the show, mainly with his foray into utilitarian footwear, flat black boots done in collaboration with Manolo Blahnik that felt fresh and added to the mystique and idiosyncrasy of the collection.
The color palette — blacks, grays, midnight blues — was darker than usual as well. So if romance was an intention, it became harder to see. The collection was progressive. Its minimal beginnings bloomed into an expressive world without losing any of Gordon’s dreamy ideals. If it felt episodic — one idea after another, with little apparent connection — it was no matter. He had his reasons. “We did the run of the show so it would be a build up,” he said. Clean ribbed dresses in black made way for white chiffon blouses that floated like gossamer. Then prints —always organic, never too digital — came into play.
The show closed with a strapless guipure lace dress, delicately embroidered with flowers that resembled hyacinths. Those combat black boots grounded the look with a cool severity. It was a bold move that paid off. And as the last model walked off and the Godmother of Punk belted out “G-L-O-R-I-A,” it became easy to see what Wes was after. “The boots, the makeup, the Patti Smith…it all contributed to their confidence,” he explained. “But in a feminine way.”