Fashion Week has begun!
My first show was Alice Ritter at the Players Club in the chic, Grammercy Park area. It was cold and of course, I arrived on the wrong side of the Park and had to walk around three sides of it to get to my destination.
Inside, young girls in white T-shirts with the simple Alice Ritter logo in black letters, were all smiles. I got there close to start time (I know from experience that most fashion shows do not really start on time) and noticed the cozy club was already packed with chattering fashionistas. Two Alice Ritter staffers, chattering in melodic tones, in French, were sitting on one of three available couches, on opposite ends. They moved over so I could sit down, and I gratefully sank into the leather couch for the “wait” (which turned out to be about 35 minutes). While sitting, I chatted with a young woman who said she was there as an Assistant Buyer for the Isetan department store in Japan. So many buyers and press (yours truly included) didn’t have seat assigments! We were finally ushered into a “great hall” lined with imposing oil paintings of what I presume were the founders or past presidents of the Players Club, squeezing ourselves through a gauntlet behind three rows of tightly packed (and mostly filled) seats. We filed in slowly, and I realized that there was an open seat right in front of where the line ended. The lights were just about to go out so I sat down. Alas, anyone not in the front row had an obstructed view.
But the clothes (from what I could see of them) were worth the wait. Down the runway came the most romantic if “costumy” clothes I’ve seen in a long time. They Edwardian inspired collection featured the most fantastic cropped jackets with nipped-in waists and long, tiered, flouncy back treatments. These were paired with nicely tailored, wide-legged, pants, and romantic, full skirts. Alice Ritter uses a mixture of woven fabrics, and since it was a Fall collection, there was a lot of substantial wool, heavy cotton, and silk. The colors were extremely austere: black, black and more black, and some grey, olive green, and a bit of “caramel, plus a bunch of blouses and dresses in silky, royal purple fabrics. What added spark was silky shine, and some sparkle or sheen in the fabrics of the jackets and skirts.
A lot of this collection is what I’d call “party” or special event clothes, but not in the sense of a formal evening gown. These are clothes to turn heads, but without a rhinestone or a bead, in sight. A standout was a “dandy’s” outfit, mixing masculine and feminine: a pure white blouse with a huge ruffled front and collar of crystal pleats, paired with blakc pants and a fitted jacket. With an outfit this “showy” all you need is a pair of diamond stud earrings, and you’re good to go! Another standout were two coats: one was a boxy, black and white tweed mid-length coat with a very large, shawl color. The other, a creamy ivory wool with a funnel neck and large buttons, that seemed very retro (think: Audry Hepburn in Charade).
I didn’t go backstage for this one, but the main theme of the hair reminded me of party girl fone to sleep and this is the result in the morning. The hair was a “messy” bun with long pieces or tendrils deliberately falling out of it to the side. It was romantic, but I’d suspect it might be harder to accomplish at home than simply making a bun, and sleeping on it! The makeup was by NARS. I liked the matte, dark rose or warm red lips as the main focal point. I’ll try to get the details from NARS and share them later on.