One of the challenges already creeping into thought this season is that as we sit here looking at clothes for next spring and summer, the weather and temperatures are just right to want to wear them now. Such sentiments have been quite common among many of the buyers present at various shows today, but none more so than at this Marissa Webb presentation. When she opened the show with a series of incredibly practical pieces in the perfect summer white, one of the first comments I heard was, “They would have to show me this after Labor Day.”
While there is always a lot of emphasis on color palettes with spring/summer collections, Ms. Webb really delivers some of her best work this season in simple black and white. In fact, it is that very crisp, clean, fundamental look that is likely to make this collection one of her most popular. There are not a lot of unnecessary frills, no unneeded adornments getting in the way (except for a few buttons) and no crazy styles that are impossible to figure out.
Well, okay, I may stand corrected on that last statement. One this Ms. Webb does very well is tie knots in her coats. She does such a good job at it as to make it quite unlikely that the perfect knot can be duplicated off the runway. If one is not a sailor or Boy Scout, or have easy access to either, one is going to have difficulty achieving that very cool, very casual look Ms. Webb achieves with her overcoats. Other than that little detail, however, the collection is immensely wearable.
Not all the collection is black and white by any means, either. Ms. Webb utilizes a most wonderful cold steel blue on a number of pieces, and a very warm but not too glaring orange gives some pop when it occurs. One curious element, though, is her choice of greens, which I can only describe for you as the approximate color of pea soup. That this color appears most often in a number of coats with a nautical influence makes me wonder if Ms. Webb might have spent some time around the Merchant Marine. A naval influence would also help explain those perfect knots.
For all the practicality of this collection, there is a hiccup with some of the buttons; specifically, buttons that run all the way down the back of some tunics and dresses. Why? I really have to look at them as a decorative element to justify their existence. Assistance is required with buttons on the back of the bodice as it is. I can’t imagine many are going to bother unbuttoning the garment all the way down.
Marissa Webb definitely has a very attractive collection on her hands, especially if one likes mermaid hems and monochrome palettes. Wearable and enjoyable, these pieces give us something to which we can look forward next spring.
Photo credit: Frazer Harrison