It was a highly unique fashion show, born of highly unique circumstances. In September, Laura Kim and Fernando Garcia were named co-creative directors at Oscar de la Renta, replacing Peter Copping at the venerable luxury label. It was a return to the company where they'd both begun their careers. In the meantime, they'd launched their own fledgling label, Monse, which fast became a celebrity favorite (and Kim had worked briefly at Carolina Herrera).
On Monday evening, they pulled off the feat of showing their two, quite different lines together in one big show. It did not go entirely as planned: A huge silver curtain, meant to pull back dramatically for the de la Renta section, got stuck and stayed stubbornly put on one side.
But the clothes themselves definitely impressed. The first item down the runway for Monse was a ruffled white shirt with oversized, cascading sleeves and bared shoulders. Exposed shoulders were a theme; dresses or sweaters, as in a roomy black turtleneck, often had one shoulder covered and one not. Casual tops and dresses led to fancier outfits, in velvet or satin — or covered in sequins, as in a red-and-blue sequined tunic worn over black velvet cargo pants, and paired with red sequin pumps.
The Monse (pronounced Mon-Say) vibe was decidedly younger and edgier than the classic de la Renta ethos, but those clothes, too, seemed to have taken on a new vibe. An example: a pale pink pantsuit revealed a huge silver sequined corset underneath. A classically shaped strapless cocktail dress was cleverly modernized with colorful "abstract brushstroke" embroidery, and with black suede thigh-high boots underneath, rather than strappy heels.
Similarly, an elegant black velvet cocktail dress was freshened with a "one-shoulder" look — only one strap — and especially by the striking, crystal-embroidered black thigh-high boots underneath.