Cathy Horyn put Nicolas Ghesquiere on notice this week when she said editors are getting impatient with his experimental treatments, yearning for the cool street chic of his earlier collections. But if anyone was paying attention today, the Ghesquiere effect is still alive and kicking. While Joseph Altuzarra’s sensational collection isn’t a direct repro, you would have to squint pretty hard to overlook the references.
With a jungle-like backdrop, Altuzarra cut sharp and vibrant floral prints into tailored dresses, high-shouldered jackets and trim trousers. The floral print showed up sparingly in belts and trims before coming out head-to-toe in an explosively colorful jumpsuit. The best looks mixed intricately tailored flared skirts with thickly padded jackets.
Commercially, this collection is a bit of departure from last season’s no-brainer parkas, but saffron and green knits and sleeveless leather coats are sure to fly fast, not to mention the black lacquered jackets that rival some of Altuzarra’s best looks from fall. Altuzarra is finding his happy medium between editorial pages and customers’ closets. Referential or not, the man deserves his moment right about now.