New York Fashion Week Fall '13: Alice + Olivia by Stacey Bendet's Romance, Roses and Romanovs

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Summary: Fall means something different to each designer who participates in New York Fashion Week. For Stacey Bendet of Alice + Olivia, it amounted to layer upon layer of lush, luxurious fabrics expertly styled into vignettes of what Bendet called, “Fantasy Street Style.” Noticeably darker and moodier than what the perky princess of grrrl power fashion typically displays, Fall 2013 was a rich symphony of looks that toed the line between Old World elegance and modern urbanity . The crown of braids that adorned each model’s head immediately provided a certain ethnicity to the looks, especially those with a circlet of roses tucked in, giving off a romantic Spanish vibe. The models stood or draped themselves over furnishings made to look like old European rooms, punctuated with gilded armchairs and lavish Persion rugs. Some of the garments had a decidedly Eastern Europan flair —  like 21st century Romanovs — seen especially in a richly embroidered vest, a velvety brocade blazer or a plush multi-colored fur coat. Other looks seemed tough and edgy, bordering on an almost 1980’s in NYC vibe with studded leather jackets and Madonna-esque tulle skirts.
And then there were the evening looks — a a longtime forte for Bendet, though this season’s seemed the most sophisticated yet. Delicate lace, exquisite feathers and voluminous ball gown skirts, everything us girls have always wanted and which Bendet seems to have an uncanny awareness of. Though diverse and traveling in several directions, the collection maintained its cohesiveness as a collection. And the Alice + Olivia shoes and bags — tall, buttery leather boots, funky studded heels and doctor’s bags with velveteen embroidery — completed Bendet’s vision which, as always is a perfectly dressed fantasy for the rest of us.
Color Palette: Black, silver, grey, gold, brown, beige, forest green, burnt orange, crimson, navy blue, metallic, sky blue, white, yellow, olive green, cream
Fabrics and Textures: Lace, fur, velvet, silk, jacquard, feathers, silk charmeuse, organza, tulle, leather, satin, brocade, jersey, cotton, wool, sequins
Key Looks: Maroon velvet jacket with leather piping, Floral brocade blazer and skirt, multi fur jacket, black lace and feather evening gown, red and black printed ball gown, floral printed navy blue ball gown skirt, zebra bag, blue and black striped bubble skirt, metallic jacquard pants
-Alia Rajput
Images: WWD

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