Proenza Schouler’s Safety Blanket No Time to Waste Yields Dividends
Lazaro Hernandez and Jack McCollough have always dressed a certain kind of urban woman: The model, the young Lululemon mother, the supportive editor who wears a size six.
There’s stasis between staying true to the customer and accommodating more people under the tent. This collection was more welcoming yet Proenza Schouler devotees will still feel satiated.
Perhaps this was because they were instinctive, reacting to what’s happening in the world which of course impacts everyone. The duo put the collection together rather quickly, they said, starting the bulk of their designing around Christmas.
“The news, the state of the world, things are unraveling,” all impacted their work, said Hernandez.
Instinctively, they began thinking of blankets for protection.
They thought of how the current disturbing news might dampen women’s spirit and so the impetus was to think about “looks that she could get excited about.”
The upshot was a fire engine red dress with bare shoulders and a banded bodice. The red topper with a menswear bent felt like it could provide both a shot in the arm and urban protection.
Capes that looked very much like small blankets, were thrown over tapered dresses as well as slim pants.
The designers said they were further inspired by the way they saw stylist Camilla Nickerson use or more precisely “wear” a blanket as a cape.
Leitmotifs included asymmetry in dresses and tops, and bared shoulders, suggesting moments of delicacy and vulnerability amid the protection.
Feet were shod in square-toed, mid-heel boots or jeweled square-toed sandals worn with socks or hose – coincidentally a look the ever-stylish Nickerson used to slay in years ago until everyone caught up.
It was a concise, satisfying collection.
“Sometimes it’s amazing to have all that time that you have in spring – seven months,” the duo said finishing each other’s sentences as they sometimes do. There was still the same push and pull between them about what ultimately hit the runway, Hernandez shared. But, they continued, “sometimes when you have a short amount of time; to go with your gut is the best thing.”