As bright and colorful as Donna Karan’s DKNY line was yesterday, her eponymous line, Donna Karan New York, was soft and subdued. Ms. Karan was inspired by artisan fabrics she saw in India, but the overall effect was one that could conjure the American Southwest, Australian Outback, or even the plains of Africa. The result is a clothing line so well designed for summer that one can almost feel a hot, dusty wind blowing across the catwalk.
The color palette is very basic: dusty blues, golds, and browns with patterns highlighted with black and white designs. Designs are accessorized with broad, slouched leather belts, leather necklaces, and a modified cowboy hat that cannot help but command the attention of any room into which is is worn.
Silhouettes are loose and flowing, easily catching the slightest breeze, but strong on sexiness with long slits on skirts and blouses open so deep that the audience could not help but see multiple nipples throughout the show (not that anyone was complaining). Shirt collars are popped up, but shirt tails are tucked loose and sloppy. The handful of maxi dresses that close the line billow with extra yards of fabric that give one almost an ethereal appearance walking across the room or down the sidewalk.
These are the styles, the separates, that turn heads. Donna Karan designs all her pieces along what she considered seven critical styles that all women need in their wardrobe and there is plenty here to fill a closet. The leather jackets are especially well done pieces destined to become timeless, valuable additions to your wardrobe. The patterned skirts work well with the tops shown, but would also work just as well with any white shirt one might have in the closet.
What Donna Karan gives us with this collection is a supremely versatile collection that is likely to have something for just about every woman on the planet. All that’s waiting is for you to run to your nearest store and buy them.