Mark Badgely and James Mischka have created such an incredibly huge collection for spring/summer 2014 that I am largely convinced it would have been better received, and certainly more easily consumed, had it been split between separates/casual wear, and evening gown/formalwear, There is simply so much to this line that it is impossible to do the whole thing justice in a review concise enough to not have everyone quitting half-way through.
A couple of notable concepts do span the entire line. First, the roaring twenties are back and roaring in both parts of the collection. I even saw some flapper-style fringe on a couple of the gowns and, to my surprise, it looks absolutely wonderful. Second, old-fashion glamour never dies. Whether it is seen in a casual blouse/pant combination or a classic red gown, the two designers bring a high level of romance and feminity to every one of their pieces.
Attempting to be as concise as possible, you should know that the collection plays very much into the trend toward higher waist lines, especially in the separates when paired with a cropped top of any kind. I don’t think I’ve seen a navel all season and there certainly were none in place here. That being said, the pair does make use of sheer fabrics, especially in blouses, and sent them down the runway without benefit of a camisole. There were plenty of nipples to be seen among the separates (not that I’m complaining, mind you). A few pieces came equipped with the bucket-style hats of the 1920s, but the team didn’t push the look too hard as contemporary hair style tend to not mix well with the helmet head that accompanies those hats.
As far as the gowns go, of course they are everyone beautiful and ready for next springs award show red carpets. I’m sure the brand will be well represented throughout Hollywood. What’s worth noting about this portion of the collection is that they offer both tightly tailored as well as loose and flowing silhouettes. Which plays better likely depends on whether one has born any children or spends much time in the gym. There were a couple of installments of peplum here that seemed strangely out of place, but other than that the collection was nothing short of amazing.
Wearable? Yes, you want to at least try on these separates. I think that most women will find them very feminine and very flattering. As for the gowns, well … let me know when you get your invitation to the Oscars and then we’ll talk.