New York Fashion Week Fall ’12. Alice + Olivia Fetes Elegance.

February 13, 2012 • Fashion Blog, Fashion Shows, New York Fashion Week Fall '12

Summary: Stacey Bendet’s Fall collection for alice + olivia was an all-out, Lolita-inspired fete of urban Parisian elegance, infused with the witty, playful aesthetic that always colors Bendet’s collections. This season brought about a new point of the view for the designer with the launch of the alice + olivia Gown collection. Voluminous-skirted floor-length gowns were swept with graphic black and white prints. Others showcased Bendet’s penchant for textured detail, with a strapless navy and emerald gown featuring layers of tiered ruffling from top to bottom, including its extended train. Exhibiting a more sensuous approach, the collection also featured elegant body-hugging gowns encased in sequins, accessorized with a long metallic evening coat or an orange and black fur neck warmer.

Her color palette was rich in jewel tones and vibrant combinations of bold hues. The playful synergy of elegant chic and modern sass was evidenced by the juxtaposition of metallic cargo harem pants against back-less lace gowns, or the tulle skirts of cocktail dresses finished with a tilted beret. Be it ruffled, bubbled, sheer, polka dotted, pleated or lace, Bendet incorporated nearly every possible textural moment into this single collection. Despite the potential for sensory overload, her intuition is impeccable. Each look is accentuated by, or even built from, another.

You would be hard-pressed to find a designer who has as much fun with storytelling as Stacey Bendet. The worlds she creates in her presentations have the power to transport viewers to another time — sleek, infused cocktails were served alongside glasses of Chandon Rose and Magnum ice cream bars (you’ve seen the Karl Lagerfeld-directed commercials!) When my fellow editor, Alia, and I left last night, we remarked that alice + olivia is the shining focal point of each season for us — “How will you even write about this?” she asked.

As Bendet says, “A dress is only a dress until it’s a story.” If that’s the case, then this Fall Bendet has definitely produced a collection of coveted best-sellers.

Colors: Black, nude, white, pale gold, gold, midnight blue, yellow metallic, burgundy, chocolate, plum, camel, red, cream, orange, royal blue, yellow, emerald green, pink, grey, silver.

Fabrics and Textures: Lace, sequin, fur, knit, tulle, grosgrain, metallic, silk, floral, suede, mongolian fur, leopard, embossed leather, pleating, calf skin, patent leather, suede, striping, prints, polka dots, velvet, satin ribbon, graphic print, tweed, watercolors, colorblocking, ombre, bubble skirt, pinstripes, peplum, beading, cashmere, ruffles, crystals, accordion pleating, herringbone, studs, pony hair.

Key Looks: White sequin cropped puff bomber coat with fur hood, white cropped knit long sleeve sweater with a white full tulle skirt and grosgrain waistband with pale gold metallic pumps; Black and white graphic print cap sleeve gown with open back and large black patent black; Wide leg silk grey and black plaid print pant with poppy peplum long sleeve tee, grey and black knit infinity scarf and wide black sequin belt.

— Amanda Aldinger

Photos: alice + olivia

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