Ever since he made his debut at Carolina Herrera with Resort 2019, Wes Gordon has proven himself more than capable of producing the kind of fare that serves as the brand's bread and butter: red carpet-worthy gowns, uptown-gala cocktail dresses, ladies-who-lunch knits, boardroom-appropriate tailoring — he's done it all, and then some.
But one thing Gordon hasn't really tried at Herrera, at least not in a big way, is sexy. The Fall 2022 collection, which debuted on Monday morning, is here to change all of that.
Inspired by "the self-assured, strong and full-of-fire Carolina Herrera woman," the designer aimed to create "bold, heart-pounding" pieces, and personally, I think he succeeded. I know my heart was pounding at some of the tulle confections presented on the runway, from an ombré gown with a high-low hemline and long train to a coat covered in plush poufs.
What felt like a real departure for Gordon, though, are the corseted pieces throughout the collection. It's hard to craft these kinds of garments in a way that's flattering to the wearer (I still have nightmares about the dreaded boob cage trend of 2017) but his take features a much more open cup style, either on a black net top paired with pants or on dresses dipping into low Vs at the bust. Gordon doesn't often go for sexy, which is what made these ideas all the more alluring.
Out in Hollywood, there's surely already a top-stylist-filled race to the black bodysuit dripping in beading that ticks the tricky "sexy-but-cool" box (not to mention those aforementioned tulle gowns; Oscar season is coming, people!); even the most conservative of customers will find something appealing in the LBD with a flamenco ruffle at the skirt.
Still, all of the more traditional Herrera elements remain, from a pouf-sleeved coat to an elegant silk ballgown skirt paired with a white-button down (a signature of Mrs. Herrera herself). A showstopper piece comes in the form of a well-fitted black blazer that features trails of pink, red and purple wrapping down the bust and trailing away from the waist; coats get a statement-making update in saturated jewel tones and embellished plackets. It's refreshing to learn that just when you think you have Gordon pegged down, he shows that he's still got tricks up his sleeves.
And because through his whole tenure, Gordon has been respectful of the brand's roots, he took his finale bow with Miro Hermes and Francois Bouchet, the head patternmakers of the Carolina Herrera atelier who were retiring after a combined four decades with the house. What's not to love about that?
See the complete Carolina Herrera Fall 2022 collection in the gallery below: