Peter Som showed his collection at MAC & Milk Studios this year as an installation show, where those with invitations were allowed to come in and peruse the collection as you would in an art gallery. The models stood on a runway broken into three parts and posed for photos as guests sipped cocktails and water, chatted with Som as he strolled through the crowd and talked about the amazing collection. After days of standing in pushy, crowded lines and exhausting sprints between one show to the next, this calm atmosphere brought out the best in everyone who attended. People waited their turn to shoot the clothes, smiled as they spoke to one another and were – dare I say it? – civilized. I wish every collection could be shown in this manner because it turns it into a celebration of the clothes, not a stiletto-clad battle to see who will get a seat.
The situation was made even more spectacular by the fact that the clothes were truly beautiful. Taking cues from the 1940’s, Som showed a collection of interchangeable pieces that all seemed to work as an entire wardrobe, not just as individual outfits. The Americana feel was fun, funky and charming, using multiple patterns together to great success. The harmony of stripes, embroidery, polka dots, herringbone and other patterns on fun summer-weight sweaters, hot shorts, skirts and sundresses harkened back to an easier, carefree time in our history and it was a trip down Memory Lane I was happy to take.
While Som may have left his past with legendary American fashion house Bill Blass behind him, his knowledge of the vibrancy that is our fashion history has not escaped him. This collection was a breath of fresh air and should turn even the most jaded, jet-black-loving urbanite into an optimistic patter mix master come spring.