The Lela Rose show is always a big event every season, with a long, LONG line to get in and an uncomfortable wait to see the collection. Having covered backstage (a post on which will come later) and now standing in line to get in (standing in line hurts by Day Four,) I held onto the excitement of hitting my seat and watching the collection of Lela’s always artistically-inspired clothing hit the runway.
For the Lela Rose girl is almost always stylishly optimistic and so I remained so until I made it inside to take my seat directly across the runway from Mariska Hargitay, Susan Sarandon, and her daughter, actress Eva Amuri (who I believe has commissioned Lela Rose to make her wedding dress.) Honestly, I live for Susan Sarandon and I love Rose’s clothing, so I tucked my aching feet under my chair and prepared to watch the collection take shape.
The first thing you have to respect is that Lela Rose is an artist and her collections usually have some amazing artistic inspiration from a gallery or a series of paintings that have moved her in her travels. This season, the designer was inspired by a trip to Coney Island, which brought up memories of the Neon Gallery in Las Vegas and how the signage has changed and aged from then and now. What you could consider a rather depressing reference was anything but. Rose used the negative space around the letters in signage to create gorgeous patterns and faded pops of neons in tangerine, citrine and lime green popped against grittier hues meant to look like aging metal and rust.
Rose’s collection was filled with strong silhouettes and beautiful dresses, although a couple of dresses took on a little too much embellishment, which would be challenging on even the slightest woman and definitely overkill on a woman with curves. But most of the collection was beautiful and completely wearable, with excellent pieces that were so optimistic, you’d never guess that dilapidated signage was the inspiration – a true sign of a deft designing talent.