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New York


Spring 2018 Ready-to-Wear

New York

BY Katharine K. Zarrella

September 12, 2017

Imagine a lazy, Saturday afternoon spent swinging in a hammock somewhere far away from the city, occasionally glancing over to see clothes drying in the sun as they hang on a clothesline. This is precisely where Chris Gelinas took us with his Spring 2018 collection.

“I used to love being in my great-grandmother’s backyard, and she had this old clothesline on a wheel, and I thought it was the most magical thing in the world,” recalled Gelinas at his presentation. “So I thought about those moments when you’re a kid. What’s better than falling asleep with nothing on your mind?

The designer set up a somewhat stark take on this scene in a Chelsea gallery, where he displayed his Spring wares clipped to twine via clothespins.

That laid-back vibe came through in a collection that juxtaposed lightness and ease with Gelinas’ signature attention to detail.

Some of the strongest pieces here were an asymmetrical dress with a tie-waist and a matching skirt, both of which were done in dark navy with white stripes. These garments were hand-pleated and made to appear intentionally wrinkled—great for the woman who’s always throwing her clothes in a suitcase.

“It’s a lot about texture, and just softening it up. We really embraced wrinkles,” said Gelinas, pointing to a lilac sheath dress. It was made from viscose, which was chemically treated for a wrinkle effect, and then finished with an organza overlay. The result seemed at once prim-and-proper and lived-in.

Ruffle and bow details, wide, a-line skirts, feather embellishments (on eveningwear), and eyelet cottons lent a retro femininity to this outing.

This season, Gelinas also worked with a mill to created a floral tapestry with a “bleached-out effect.” It was most striking as the front panel of an elongated, white, suiting-style vest. That piece was paired with a white skirt covered in hundreds of 3D flowers, which were molded by hand out of that same tapestry. I stood staring at this piece for about 10 minutes. The texture and handwork was mesmerizing—a true work of art.


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