Elie Tahari Fall 2011 Collection
Elie Tahari, it seems, is feeling the times like everyone else. It’s funny; due to the vagaries of Fashion Week scheduling , which required us to split up and watch shows separately, and the opportunity to attend shows in the skybox (Michael Kors and Nanette Lepore) or off-site (Oscar de la Renta), the Elie Tahari show was the first time in many days that we were both sitting in a tent together. Since the week was winding down and we had seen so many shows, we wound up taking the opportunity, while Joan and Melissa posed for pictures below us, to trade war stories. “Look! Over there is where I almost passed out during the Cynthia Rowley show!” We also wound up talking about the various trends of the week and observed that fur-soaked luxury was back in a big way. It seemed to us like a response to times of increasing violence and economic uncertainty; a fantasy, as in the days of the ’30s and late ’70s, when fashion responded similarly by ramping up the decadence, but also a pragmatic appeal to the very demographic that can be relied on in uncertain times, as represented by Joan Rivers herself, posing away in her own fur-based ensemble.
So it was in some ways not surprising that Elie Tahari, who is known for his classic American sportswear, instead took a different turn with this collection, described in the show notes as “dark romanticism.” It’s luxurious and dramatic and wearable, blending leathers and furs, velvets and lace, in beautiful merlot reds and stark blacks and whites. Even with all the drama on display, we appreciated how, in the best sportswear manner, each look was so put together; belted, gloved, booted and pursed. Despite the “antique music box” fantasy aspect (also listed in the show notes), these are still very wearable and pairable pieces. It gets a bit repetitive at times, as well as a bit too “rich bitch,” what with the furs and the animal prints, but it’s a strong and eye-catching collection, with an elevated sense of drama.
[Photo Credit: wireimage, getty - Video Credit: mbfashionweek via youtube.com]