Mention Vera Wang to most women and they seem to instinctively hear “wedding dresses,” whether one actually mentions them or not. Vera Wang’s gowns are such a ubiquitous part of the Red Carpet and wedding seasons that many people forget she actually does ready-to-wear and does it very well. So, if one were to attend the designer’s spring/summer 2014 show expecting wedding dresses, or even anything one might remotely wear to a wedding, one would be very, very disappointed.
Instead, what Ms. Wang sent wafting down the runway at us was a sea of black, starting with a couple of sporty looking crop tops, and complete with sloppy pony tails and broad black headbands that rendered the need for a hairstylist moot. The sporty trend continued with mesh-paneled jackets over knit skirts and mesh paneled dresses with racing T backs under mesh jackets.
We were ten looks into the collection before we finally saw a touch of blue in a dress composed of multiple layers of sheer chiffon. In the following dress, one of those blue layers was replaced by black. Vera’s not letting this spring look get too bright too quickly.
After playing for a moment with over-sized sequins, which may be the weakest element of the collection, Ms. Wang returns to the chiffon layers, this time putting a white print over the sheer black, and then reversing it. The effect is stunning; not too casual, not too dressy, but totally appropriate for dinner at a sidewalk restaurant with friends.
Eventually, the designer tosses in layers of yellow and even gets around to layering a very bright red over and under white, but the silhouettes don’t change from those established early. Everything is very light, very breezy, and very flowing. One might want to be careful about being caught out in a wind, because many of these looks could have the effect of acting as a sail, altering one’s course of motion.
At the very end there is one all-white dress, perhaps included from some sense of obligation. Would one wear it as a wedding gown? Perhaps if one is getting married on a tennis court.
If you only think of Vera Wang as super formal and out of reach, you definitely want to reconsider that opinion with this very sporty and very wearable spring/summer line. Vera Wang can be found in boutiques and stores all across the Midwest.