“We really wanted to refocus on bringing things back to the body”
VP of design Liz Giardina spoke of the pinned-in look underlining Derek Lam 10 Crosby’s resort 2015 collection. If any brand can reign-in shillouettes when figure de-emphasis is having a moment on the fashion cycle, it’s 10 Crosby. The collection was a display of their construction competency- the turmeric-colored knife pleated pencil skirt that opened the line had exposed cover-stitching and darting, details normally hidden in clothing. It’s the brand’s well-deserved ‘our tailoring is so beautiful it could be detail’ boasting after sending quality construction into stores season after season. Yet the brand is saved from appearing self-absorbed to the point of loosing consumer-touch because this exhibition of confidence mutually benefits the costumer.
The two entities form a friendly bond–the brand transferring all their quality and confidence onto the wearer of clothing. When the girl wears 10 Crosby, puts on that external construction detail, she shows she can both afford and recognize quality-made clothing. Though, just like the brand, she does not look out-of-touch with the mass customer: the visible seaming stops the items from being too put-together, almost by appearing turned inside out.
Still, however amazing the construction may be, it is not 10 Crosby’s only stich-of-Genius. Equally impressive is the brands awareness of how to adapt their ‘waist-defining’ vision into a fashion scene cluttered with boxy tops and low-slung waists carrying a relaxed feel.
Just as they did with the visible construction, to remain modern, the Crosby team needed to craft a way to ‘pull-tight’ their girl’s waist without making her look ‘up-tight.’
So instead of defining just the natural waist, the brand lengthened the torso by both banding the waist and placing a form of emphasis on the hips: sometimes this meant dropping pant waistbands low to so they peaked out from under peplum tops, as with the light-blue one paired under a cropped jacket alongside tan, cuffed pants. At other times it came by wrapping cord around the natural waist of a shirt with a wide waistband at theto break the torso with two parallel lines- like as with the matching floral pencil skirt and knit-top set.
The resulting looks emitted the same ‘casual’ and ‘easy’ look popular this season– like the woman wanted to make her coral, boxy top a peplum one day so she wrapped a piece of draw-cord around her waist, unconcerned (perhaps proud?) her DIY job was obvious. In an attention economy, it is a win for both the customer and brand: when minimalism is in-fashion, differentiation is difficult; no matter if a boxy, color-block blouse is from H&M or Zara, it will look the same. When the girl goes ‘too-daring’ to differentiate her look, she risks appearing contrived (a bad thing as ironically, the current fashion is to carefully manufacture an un-manufactured appearance.)
The draw-cord is the winning element, allowing her to show she is trend-savvy, (take it off there are only popular basics like slouchy tees and button, downs, sheath dresses, and knit two-piece sets left), yet also providing a way to differentiate herself as a fashion innovator from the mass customer by defining the natural waist–this girl knows where the trend pendulum will swing next, she just does not care to wait until it swings there.
Derek Lam 10 Crosby is, with no question, having both a high-fashion and commercial moment.