The New York Spring/Summer 2011 Collections:
The Age of Enlightenment

Calvin Klein Spring 2011 Collection

- by Marilyn Kirschner

Past articles:
Fall/Winter 2010 Report
Spring/Summer 2010 Report
Fall/Winter 2009 Report
Spring/Summer 2009 Report
Fall/Winter 2008 Report
Spring/Summer 2008 Report
Fall/Winter 2007 Report
Spring/Summer 2007 Report
Fall/Winter 2006 Report
Spring/Summer 2006 Report
Bernadine Morris "Ten Best Looks" of the Spring 2006 Season
Fall/Winter 2005 Report
Bernadine Morris's "10 Best Looks" of the Fall 2005 Season
Sprijng/Summer 2005 Report
Bernadine Morris's "10 Best Looks" of the Spring 2005 Season
Fall/Winter 2004 Report
Bernadine Morris's "10 Best Looks" of the Fall 2004 Season
Spring/Summer 2004 Report
Bernadine Morris's "10 Best Looks" of the Spring 2004 Season

Fall/Winter 2003 Report
Spring/Summer 2003 Report

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I’ve already said what I’ve had to say about Lincoln Center as the new venue and everyone else has said enough about it by now. I will only add that it was convenient; most everyone seemed to like it, and I hope to be going back there for many years to come as I cannot think of another spot that would be as perfect. That said, once inside the various venues, it was hard to remember that you were at Lincoln Center, and the iconically artistic location did not automatically impart a sense of art to a collection, nor did it make average or banal collections look better. As for the collections, while there are always exceptions to every ‘rule’ when it comes to fashion, my quick overall impressions of Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week for spring 2011 are as follows:

In general, there was a sense of graceful elegance and sophistication that imbued the collections not to mention a lot of truly wearable, desirable clothes. In one fell swoop, tough, hard edged, head to toe black suddenly looked so ‘last season’. On many runways, black was kept to a minimum or was missing altogether and the story was to be found in a lightening up with all sorts of skin toned, almost nude shades (from beige to camel) and white ruled! In fact, it was a veritable ‘white out’ as pieces in optic white literally stormed runways; something in blanc not only frequently opened the show, but often ended it.

There was also the frequent employment of color, and strong shades were often artfully mixed together as it was at Marc Jacobs whose homage to YSL - down to the silhouettes, fabrics, hair, accessories, and yes - clashing colors, was anything but subtle. It’s worth noting that as I am writing this, Miuccia Prada and Raf Simons for Jil Sander, showing in Milan, made a strong case for bright colors, and in some cases, bright clashing colors, and it’s a sure bet that this will prove to be directional in the future. Meanwhile, there were periodic flashes of strong color, in addition to bold, graphic, ethnic, tribal, or art inspired patterns (often mixed), And while abbreviated shorts (a huge trend) and short dresses (though not too short: just a few inches above the knee), were still part of the story, many designers made a strong case for below the knee to floor length (in skirts and dresses); and not just for evening, but for daytime.

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