HERE it is. The return to the runway. As New York Fashion Week commences, the old, much-missed buzz of the fashion community once again is felt pulsating through the four big cities, and there is no better brand to commence this season that Proenza Schouler.
After last season’s digital look-book that drew attention from all sectors as the newly commemorated Vice President Kamala Harris’ step-daughter, Ella Emhoff made her “runway” debut with the brand, spring-summer 2022 looks into our now – a now that is decorated with the term freedom.
Looking deep into freedom and highlighting the fragility of it while simultaneously taking an optimistic perspective of the future, SS22 takes the utilitarian pieces of our wardrobes and rethinks them through the romantic lense of movement – be it in our daily lives or travelling. Think practicality meets fluidity.
Cut and proportions remain conservative by sticking to the rulebook but decorations give them that edge, from fringing and beads to knitwear and injections of bright colour. The vivid shades that the collection is soaked in has been described by the brand as a ‘psychological tonic to recent times’ while the diaphanous silk crepes, puffed sleeves and cut-outs give the proof that there is fun to be had.
While the collection echoes a holiday feel, there is still reality within creative directors Jack McCollough and Lazaro Hernandez’s eternal fantasy. The shoes in the collection recognise that the past year’s confinement as brought comfort to the forefront of our wardrobes.
We have not been dancing in stilettos in sequin dresses, we have been wearing leisurewear with trainers. There are sandals designed for daily outdoor use and the Dia Day bag is reimagined in a more experimental format as hand-woven raffia and technical faux crocodile come together to uplift this well-known silhouette.
Interwoven into this collection is a beautiful collaboration with Patti Hanna, a traditional lei-maker in Maui who hand-makes feather lei. This partnership naturally adds to this feeling of freedom as two worlds once again meet as exploration is a notion that once again returns to our spheres.
And while it reflects movement and connection, it also comes back to our return to New York, proving that distance really does make the heart grow fonder and Proenza Schouler was that warm welcome hug we needed.