Expect the Unexpected: Calvin Klein Spring 2014

Francisco Costa is celebrating his ten-year anniversary as creative director of Calvin Klein. The milestone lent a retrospective air to the designer’s spring 2014 collection, inaugurating the Spring Studios event space in Tribeca — a nice departure from its sometimes dreary midtown headquarters.

The modestly festive collection highlighted techniques Costa has utilized over the years. Opening with unfinished seams and stiff shapes, the austerity of Calvin Klein was in full force. But just as we settled in for another minimalist statement from Costa, the designer turned to a refreshing palette of mint, evergreen, and most surprisingly, multi-color fringe.

Fringe factored heavily into the collection, adding a slight tribal element to a white ankle-length, body-skimming number on Julia Nobis. The effect was sensual, and a welcome departure from the calculated, controlled Calvin Klein we’ve come to expect from Costa.

The same can’t be said of all of Costa’s riffs on deconstruction. Stiffness was an issue, as it sometimes is at Calvin, while sheer loose-fitting tops worn over pleated skirts, while lovely, were anything but unexpected. After a decade, Costa has settled into Calvin Klein’s house codes. Now we only hope he can relax a little, and see where his imagination takes him.

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