“It’s important as fashion designers not to reference fashion,” Lazaro Hernandez recently told me, “because then you’re just rehashing ideas.” That simple yet revelatory remark is at the core of the Proenza Schouler brand and the spring collection shown tonight, where nary a rehashed idea was to be found. Rather, the duo delivered several profoundly revolutionary leaps, among them a peekaboo argyle top and floor-length woven leather dresses that, around the waist, became unwoven, so that the entire skirt portion was essentially leather fringe that, with its weight, moved dramatically with each step. Not into fringe? How about a crocheted leather skirt, or a perforated leather skirt, or perhaps generously cut and tapered leather pants with a gathered waistband?
It would appear that, after twelve years — has it really been that long? — of innovative fabric development, the ‘boys’ are flexing their technical muscle. “I mean, we could just keep developing and developing [fabrics],” said McCollough, “but at a certain point, the changes become so subtle that…you have to stop.” The result was an exoticism ever-so-subtly infused with sportswear, mostly in the form of parkas and preppy men’s collars — a winning combination. Add to that the fact their accessories team is new and you have a label ripe for investment, perhaps LVMH investment, which has been the rumor — which the suspenseful music, that at times went so quiet you could hear the models walk, did nothing to quell.