“It’s funny,” said Zac Posen just before his second showing this evening. “Charles James has been in the air a lot these days.” (Yes, he has—seeing that the couturier is the subject of this year’s Met Costume Institute Gala.) Posen’s fall collection is about form, evening elegance, and American craft, he explained—all things that James practically invented. He was introduced to the mid-century master’s work by the poet and artist René Ricard, whom Posen counts as a mentor and his “biggest supporter” (and who passed away just over a week ago). And James’s oeuvre has clearly stayed with him.
You could see echoes of James’s four-leaf clover dress in Posen’s blue-gray bias-cut neckline ball dress, as well as in his sea foam silk-faille strapless “quatrefoil dress.” But it’s not all about James. This was still Posen’s show. He’s been in business ten years now, and this outing marked an evolution into more streamlined and simple territory than we’ve perhaps ever seen from Posen. In his own words: “There were no ruffles.” There were, however, mélange tweed suits and dresses for day in burgundy, dark blue, and gray; structured cashmere coats; duchesse satin cocktail dresses with architectural touches.
Posen offered plenty of night looks to choose from—including an anthracite-hued duchesse with a pleated neckline and a removable floor-length cape, and a jet-black mermaid dress. But the two that did Posen and his studio proudest were a tangerine taffeta ball dress with a pleated skirt and a similar style in teal. They were totally Met ready, and it will be fun to see who gets to wear them come May.
review of the zac posen fall 2014 collection written by florence kane for vogue.com
bruna wearing a floor length cashmere coat at the zac posen fall 2014 collection
We weren’t sure what to expect this season from Zac Posen, who announced only a few days before fashion week began that he would be showing his fall 2014 collection in his Tribeca studio instead of his usual venue, Lincoln Center (a venue many have chosen to forgo this season). While Posen probably saved tens of thousands of dollars, he also had to cut his guest list in half (luckily we made the cut — thanks, Zac!)
So was the venue change worth it? For the opportunity to see those dramatic, voluminous gowns, strutted seductively down the runway by Coco Rocha, Arlenis Sosa and Anna Cleveland (Pat’s daughter) up close, yes. One hundred percent.
Posen showed his pre-fall collection in the same space a few weeks ago, and the whole thing felt charmingly old school and intimate. While this was more of a traditional runway show, the old school vibe was definitely there, made stronger by the slow, seductive way in which each of the models moved through the room, often twirling at every turn. It was awesome.
While he started things off with some daytime-appropriate skirt suits and cocktail dresses, the evening gowns were, of course, the high point. They were all drama in a mix of volumes: A couple of column gowns were refreshing and chic, and then there were the ball gowns, which literally almost couldn’t fit down the runway. I think one actually grazed my feet.
Pre-Fall and fall are important seasons for Posen gown-wise, as they fall in the midst of awards season. And given the fact that these were some of the most dramatic and billowing gowns we’ve seen from him, chances are he has his mind set on some Oscar credits, or at least some Met Ball ones — some of them definitely had a Charles James feel.
zac posen fall 2014 review written by dhabi may for fashionista.com
josephine skriver backstage at the zac posen fall 2014 collection
ester wearing a pink satin duchess gown from the zac posen fall 2014 collection
“Clean drama. No ruffles, no flounces — everything has a reason and a purpose.” That’s how Zac Posen described his collection backstage after the show and, indeed, he demonstrated a restrained hand for fall.
Simple and unadorned, the streamlined daywear included chic skirt suits with slightly pronounced shoulders and nipped waists, some with skirts in subtle A-line shapes and triangular seaming.
Even much of Posen’s eveningwear looked uncomplicated — the winner was a black column with a round strapless neckline. He of course turned up the volume with some exits — this is Zac, after all — delivering several ample ballgowns, all of them embellishment-free. A silk taffeta number in smoky blue with a mock neck made a major statement, as did a red strapless style with sweetheart neckline and supersize skirt.
Chic by day, drama by night — the collection was one of Posen’s best yet.
zac posen fall 2014 review by WWD
cora wearing a burgundy double face tweed suit from the zac posen fall 2014 collection
"Well, you come to Zac Posen, you are not going to wear sweatpants, are you?” stated New York fashion fixture Michelle Violy Harper. The beauty entrepreneur and muse showed up at said designer’s show in a spectacular sea foam chiffon bustier dress. Miraculously, her alabaster complexion hadn’t turned blue in the chilly, 20° night — puzzling, as Harper came to the show sans coat.
"Do you think Isabella Blow or Anna Piaggi would have done coat? Fashion is not about comfort!”
On Monday night, it was in front of a small, devoted crowd of friends and admirers at his Tribeca studio that Posen wanted to show his collection this season. In attendance: beautiful faces from the new agency The Lions (Madisyn Ritland, Jessica Hart), Pat Cleveland and Crystal Renn — two of Zac’s dearest darlings, the latter usually working his runway.
"But I love so much the idea of watching the show front row this season!" she said.
John Demsey, group president of Estee Lauder and Posen’s sponsor, sang the designer’s praises.”I’ve known him since he was in school. He has become such an international influence. He always had the talent and the personality, but now he has the gravitas and the body of work to prove it.”
Next to Demsey, his new rumored sweetheart, Kelly Bensimon, former model and Real Housewife concurred.
"Zac is not only charming but also well-read: he always tells you such authentic stories about men who loves to create beautiful clothes for women, which is incredibly poetic."
Former CNN fashion reporter Alina Cho — who announced Tuesday that she’ll join Ballantine Bantam Dell as editor-at-large — wouldn’t disagree. “Zac is this kind, sweet friend, who cooks me peach pies and whom I love to visit at his studio. He had his ups and downs, but look at this crowd who comes to support him.”
A few seats down, Liz Goldwyn, wearing one of Posen’s tomato-red numbers, gushed about theProject Runway judge.
"Zac makes a woman feel like a sex goddess. He’s a real go-to for the red carpet, for me, and for Hollywood, too, because he really cuts like the proper 1930s screen sirens style." To accessorize her outfit, the heiress, filmmaker, artist and writer had gone subtle: "Only the matte Dangerous lipstick by M.A.C." What about the cute, crocheted multicolored beret tilted atop her head: vintage? "Yes. It belonged to Bob Marley.”
The show itself featured Posen’s usual fabulous round of stern day dresses that fit bodies like gloves, followed by dramatic, lyrical red-carpet numbers in a bouquet of silk satins. Coco Rocha,Anne V and Josephine Skriver served as the human hangers.
Andre Leon Talley, the historic fashion figure who has been championing Posen since he was 21, also wanted to talk about his friend.
"It is wonderful at his age that he inspires such a level of elegance. Will it be Glen Close, Cate Blanchett, Sophia Vergara or any woman in the world? He wants all of them to be feminine and beautiful. Even the little simple black cocktail dress is remarkably executed, without one dysfunctional seam. I’ve always been enthusiastic — he’s tireless, energetic, and he loves what he’s doing.”
review of the zac posen fall 2014 collection by carole sabas for the hollywood reporter
anne v and coco rocha backstage at the zac posen fall 2014 collection
The press preview for the Metropolitan Museum of Art costume exhibit Charles James: Beyond Fashion took place on Monday morning, and those who attended could certainly see the couturier’s influence on Zac Posen's Fall collection when it was shown in his Tribeca studio a few hours later. “He's one of my favorite designers,” Posen said of the legendary James. “This collection came down to exactly what he was about: focusing on a level of discipline and craft.”
To emphasize his refreshed attention to good, clean work that shows off his abilities in draping, pleating, and overall garment construction, Posen presented just 25 looks. To start, there were seamed skirtsuits in mélange tweed. The construction was precise, although the hem of the skirts might’ve been taken down an inch or two for slightly more modern proportions. There were also day dresses—most notably a blue mélange tweed style with a mini cape that curved around the arms beautifully—as well as black double-face wool coats with voluminous backs that added the good kind of drama. But it was really about the gowns. The narrow, off-the-shoulder style with architectural flutter sleeves in stretchy rose-colored duchesse satin felt youthful and alive. The strapless seafoam-green number, with a skirt so wide it grazed knees on both sides of the aisle, proved that extreme volume can be done without looking garish. And who could forget the slate-blue gown with a high neckline? It was made for Fall party season.
Posen is a special designer: His talent was recognized and lauded early in his career, but he doesn’t fit into the mold of many of his contemporaries. His collections are grounded in the silhouettes, not directional trends or ideas. He is at his best when he blocks out the noise of the outside world. “I want to be able to offer women something very special,” Posen said. And with this collection, he did.
review of the zac posen fall 2014 collection by lauren sherman for style.com