Milan has swept past me and we’re into Paris.  Finally, a breather of a day to think about a veritable themes that are emerging from the shows thus far.  I’ve typed “Prairie” multiple times this past few weeks in reference to shows, without really investigating what it means other than my own vague memories of scenery in Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman or House on the Prairie.  It’s of course an ecosystem that really only exists in certain parts of the world, mainly North America, rooted by temperate tall grass and controlled by a particular climate.  The prairie vibes at Coach also felt rooted.  You sensed a certain kind of authenticity when these girls with their patchwork florals and leathers walked out onto the High Line with low cut cowboy boots and bags visible through the planted grasses and shrubbery.  This is yet another facet of Americana – most notably depicted by Terrence Malick –  refracted and reinterpreted by Stuart Vevers.  Like the mirrored runway, which gave a trippy effect to this indoor fauna-filled catwalk, this was no straightforward pastiche of prairie nor was the theme heavy handedly flung at you.

You couldn’t help but think of Vevers’ mates and former colleagues Katie Hillier and Luella Bartley and their spirit that they imbued in their Marc by Marc Jacobs collections or going further back, Luella’s own eponymous line.   It’s perhaps that shared English lens which enables Vevers to see things like ditzy florals in a different way.  They were panelled into mini dresses alongside brushstroke prints.   Coats had childlike appliqué scenes of desert skies on the back.  These clothes fell in line with Coach’s repositioning not just as an accessories brand but one with a youth-fuelled fashion identity too.   Of course, the patchwork leather jackets and biker waistcoats, hardy bowling bags and mixed floral low cut cowboy boots were there to stake Coach’s claim as America’s one true leather house, which will be celebrating its 75th anniversary next year.  That history doesn’t feel like it’s weighing down on Vevers though, as these deftly put together ensembles walked along the former railway track of the High Line.   It was the kind of palatable prairie that felt right on the money.
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Comments (9)

  1. […] Roaming through Badlands […]

  2. sasa says:

    Love Coach<3

    Shall We Sasa

  3. Cla (NABW) says:

    All of these patterns and outfits are so beautiful ! 🙂
    xoxo

    clarisse

  4. floral prints just never go anywhere
    why do i feel like its 1975 looking at these photos?
    malinda
    http://www.malindaknowles.net

  5. Aisha says:

    Love the florals! Love how you go into the details of fashion history. Lots to learn from your blog! 😀

  6. lindsey says:

    I agree with the comment that it’s 1975…love it for mixing into other things…not as a “head to toe” look. I will have to say I love the dark colored purses with the cut out , riveted on leather flowers. Probably be crazy priced. Oh well, story of my life.

    Lindsey via Vegas

  7. Carrol says:

    Very great show idea. It let me see how about it if I don’t walk on the street.

  8. […] “Make things as lightweight as possible, as simple as possible—as punchy as possible—as inexpensive as possible.”  That was Cashin’s motto at Coach.  Whilst she pared things back for simplicity’s sake, as seen in the utilitarian leather shopper totes and the one-handled sling bag, Cashin would also introduce design elements such as contrast piping, poppy colours and metal purse frames that meant Coach transitioned from being a men’s accessories brand to a fully fledged women’s one.  Any element of whimsy was always anchored by function – as seen in the signature turnlock closure, which debuted in 1964 and was inspired by Cashin’s convertible top attachment.  The array of shapes from this part of Coach’s archive is quite extraordinary.  No wonder then that they’d inspire Vevers’ own work.  Cashin’s “Courier Pouch” is the latest source of inspiration that gave way to the new Saddle bag, featured in the S/S 16 show, dubbed Coach 1941 as a way of marking the brand’s 75th Anniversary. […]

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