Diane Von Furstenberg (DVF) is celebrating the 40th anniversary of her iconic wrap dress. Ms. Von Furstenberg is not much older than I am, so I strongly remember its introduction, its many incarnations, and a couple of slightly humorous though traumatizing events in which the dress played a role in the wearer’s embarrassment. One such occasion came when a young woman crossing a windy Oklahoma parking lot had her dress come untied and then quickly yanked off her body by the wind, much to her horror but the delight of many young men in the area. I’ve also seen instances where print patterns that were totally innocent and unoffensive in their design wrapped across certain bodies in such a way as to create unintended scenes of a sexual nature… innocently worn to church.
So, with all that background sitting in my mind, I approached today’s fall/winter 2014 collection with some trepidation. There was no question but what we would see a plethora of wrap dresses, which we did, but would any of them hold any unwanted surprises?
No, they didn’t.
Instead, what we saw was a variety of iterations of the dress, some with slightly new cuts and folds, others more familiar but re-introduced with new prints. Many of the prints were floral or last least inspired by flowers, some being ripe for applique while others were more abstract. Along the way, we were also treated to some gorgeous sweaters and there was even a gown with the silhouette of a lobster that was surprisingly not strange.
Everyone came to see the wrap dresses, though, and Diane delivered with a parade of wrap dresses all in gold, inspired by the ballerina sweaters that provided the concept for the original dress. How many different ways can one design a wrap dress? I counted no fewer than 20 over the course of the show, and am still wondering about a few. The wrap dress is a very versatile concept that may be endless in the options it provides.
As the show ended, gold strips of confetti fell from the ceiling. With everyone dancing behind DVF as she made her walk down the runway, I found myself looking for a mirrored disco ball. That was the only thing missing.
Oh, and there wasn’t one wrap coat to be seen. Thank you, Diane.